BEIRUT (AFP) – Lebanese authorities have arrested six more people on suspicion of spying for Israel, taking to 16 the number of suspected spies arrested since January, an army spokesman told AFP on Monday.
The latest arrests include a policeman and his wife, who were taken into custody late on Sunday in Beirut’s southern suburbs, a stronghold of the Shiite militant group Hezbollah which fought a devastating 2006 war with Israel.
On Sunday, three suspects were arrested in the village of Habboush in south Lebanon “and initial indications show that they were spying for Israel,” a security official said.
Two Lebanese men and a Palestinian were arrested on April 25 also on suspicion of spying for Israel and were linked by the authorities to a retired general security officer arrested for spying earlier that month.
Former brigadier general Adib al-Aalam was arrested along with his wife Hayat Saloumi and nephew Joseph Al-Aalam and charged in April with espionage — a charge punishable by death in Lebanon.
The three are accused of informing Israel about Lebanese and Syrian military and civilian sites “with the aim of facilitating Israeli attacks,” a judicial official said last month.
Aalam was arrested at his office near Beirut on April 14 along with his wife. He ran a housekeeping service which he allegedly used as a front to spy for Israel.
Marwan Fakih was arrested in south Lebanon in February.