The government to not extend tenure of security chief in Lebanon


Abbas Ibrahim, the powerful head of general security in Lebanon, is poised to leave office this week since neither the government nor the parliament has debated a policy that would let him continue serving beyond reaching the mandatory retirement age.

Ibrahim is seen as a crucial regional contact with strong relations with the Hezbollah organisation, which is supported by Iran, as well as with Western nations.

He will turn 64 on Thursday, which in Lebanon is the standard retirement age. If a vacancy in their position is thought to pose a risk of instability, Lebanese authorities have in the past granted special exemptions for prominent officials to continue serving after 64.

But, at its meeting on Monday, Lebanon’s caretaker cabinet did not bring up an extension. After the meeting, Ziad Makary, the minister of information, told reporters that the interior minister should make the decision because the cabinet “can do nothing.”

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A Reuters request for comment was not answered by interim Interior Minister Bassam Al-Mawlawi, whose department oversees General Security and certain other security units.

Najib Mikati, the interim premier of Lebanon, stated in an interview last week that as the matter included law modifications, parliament should handle it. Before Ibrahim is supposed to retire, neither the House of Representatives nor the Parliament will meet.

According to a source close to Hezbollah, the organisation attempted to “put its whole weight” behind a parliamentary vote to extend Ibrahim’s tenure but was unsuccessful in doing so.

Whenever Ibrahim’s term is up, Mawlawi is anticipated to appoint an interim leader. With the presidency empty and the government serving in a caretaker role since the legislative elections of last year, Lebanon is already experiencing an unparalleled constitutional crisis.

Ibrahim is regarded as being close to Hezbollah and the local Syrian government, but he also frequently visits Washington and Paris to meet with influential people there.

He has been regarded as a crucial mediator as a result, taking part in instances ranging from the disappearance of American reporter Austin Tice to the US-mediated negotiations between Lebanon and Israel over their maritime border, which was established last year.

Tarek Bitar, the Lebanese judge looking into the disastrous August 2020 Beirut port explosion, charged him earlier this year, yet he kept his job. At the time, Ibrahim opted not to respond to the accusations.



Hashim Sheikh: He is a comprehensive personality whose personality has many social, philosophical and mystical aspects besides scientific and cultural characteristics. He writes many articles and also writes poetry from time to time.

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