ISIS to appoint Ahmad al-Assir as Emir in Lebanon, claims local newspaper
In recent years, Ahmad al-Assir’s strong statements placed him in the spotlight
Radical Lebanese Sunni cleric Ahmad al-Assir may soon become an “emir” for the ISIS’s branch in Lebanon, local newspaper Al-Joumhouria reported on Wednesday, citing security sources.
The newspaper said ISIS militants had begun planning not just for security, but also military operations in Lebanon, according to the unnamed sources.
In order to achieve this expansion, ISIS has requested support from northern Syria, the sources also told the newspaper.
The militant group has seized large areas in Syria and neighboring Iraq since last year.
In recent years, Assir’s strong statements against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies, including Lebanon’s Shiite group Hezbollah, placed him in the spotlight.
Read also: Lebanon seeks death penalty for cleric
Last year, a Lebanese military judge sought the death penalty for Assir after he was charged with the murder and attempted murder of soldiers and civilians during the clashes in the Lebanese southern city of Sidoun July 2013. Assir remains at large.