Beirut, Aug 31 (IANS/AKI) A military court in Lebanon has charged five people, including a Syrian intelligence officer, over twin car bombings that killed 47 people and injured 500 in Tripoli last week.
The Syrian intelligence officer and a second Syrian national were charged in absentia.
They were named as Mohammad Ali and Khodr Lutfi al-Airouni respectively, Lebanon’s Daily Star newspaper reported, citing judicial sources.
Two Lebanese suspects, Ahmad Gharib and Hashem Minqara, were charged with tasking Ali and al-Airouni with setting up a cell “to carry out terrorist acts in Lebanon, particularly in the north, by preparing bombs and booby trapping cars and putting them in specific areas, including religious institutions with the aim of assassinating political and religious figures”.
Police informant Mustafa Houri was also charged in the case, in which the car bombs exploded outside two Sunni mosques Aug 23.
If convicted, the suspects face the death penalty.
Minqara is said to be the head of an Islamist group in Lebanon that backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, while Houri is said to have close ties to the Syrian intelligence, according to the Daily Star.