Report: Ibrahim in Secret Negotiations with IS at Aoun's Request
General Security chief Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim is leading “highly confidential” negotiations with the jihadist Islamic State group, a media report said on Tuesday.
Ibrahim's efforts followed a request from President Michel Aoun, LBCI television said.
“The main obstacle in these negotiations is the destination to which the IS militants would leave,” the TV network added, referring to the jihadists who are entrenched in mountainous areas in the outskirts of the eastern border towns of al-Qaa and Ras Baalbek.
Ibrahim, who held a meeting with Aoun earlier on Tuesday, has played a key role in negotiations with the al-Nusra Front jihadist group that followed a Hizbullah military offensive in Arsal's outskirts.
The negotiations led to the evacuation of Nusra's militants, their families and thousands of refugees to north and central Syria and the release of eight Hizbullah fighters who were in Nusra's captivity.
Hizbullah and Nusra also exchanged the bodies of several fighters as the Lebanese state released three inmates from the Roumieh Prison at Nusra's request.
Mystery has been shrouding the fate of nine IS-held Lebanese troops for around two years now and any negotiations with the group are supposed to involve the soldiers.
The Lebanese army is meanwhile continuing its preparations for a long-awaited assault against the IS militants in the outskirts of al-Qaa and Ras Baalbek.