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Lebanon sentences ex-minister Samaha to 13 years in prison

Samaha, a close friend to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was serving a jail term for smuggling explosives into Lebanon

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Lebanese court sentences ex-minister Michel Samaha, considered close to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, to 13 years in prison on Friday for plotting attacks.

Samaha was earlier this year released on bail after being sentenced after serving a jail term for smuggling explosives into Lebanon from Syria and planning attacks, prompting days of protests from angry citizens.

The decision to release him drew criticism from Assad's opponents in Lebanon including former Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri.

Samaha, a close friend to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was serving a jail term for smuggling explosives into Lebanon from Syria and planning attacks, the national news agency said.

The country’s former Prime Minister Saad el-Hariri posted to twitter saying, “The terrorist Samaha returns to his rightful place in prison today for plotting to kill innocent citizens and drag Lebanon into civil discord.”

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