Two senior officials of Samir Geagea’s Lebanese Forces were freed Friday from four and one-half months of imprisonment since the army’s August crackdown on opposition factions hostile to Syria’s tutelage over Lebanon.
The head of LF students branch Salman Smaha and lawyer Elie Keyrouz were released on a LL400,000 bail apiece. They were held on a charge of withholding information about contacts with Israel allegedly made by Geagea’s jailed political advisor Toufic Hindi. Another bail of LL200,000 was set for Smaha’s and Keyrouz’s release in connection with charges of attempting to disturb Lebanon’s relations with a “sisterly country.” The reference here is to Syria, which maintains between 35,000 and 40,000 troops in Lebanon.
The release left only Hindi from the LF in custody along with two journalists: Habib Younis of Al Hayat and Antoine Bassil of MBC. They are all accused of making contacts with Israel for a drive to oust Syria from Lebanon.