Lebanon has received alarming reports from Western intelligence agencies and some European embassies in Beirut, warning of the danger of infiltration of terrorists from Syria into Lebanese territory in the coming weeks and months.
“Western apparatuses and embassies have built their conclusions on unstable military and security conditions in Syria and renewed sporadic rounds of violence, making the security very bad and the economic situation worse than at the climax of the war,” well-informed Lebanese security sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.
Part of the western information received in Lebanon was drawn from the situation of al-Hol refugee camp in north-eastern Syria, near the Iraqi border, which is under the control of the Kurdish forces, supported by the International Coalition Forces.
According to data, the camp hosts 76,000 people, all of whom are women and children under the age of 15, including 10,000 with foreign nationalities. Most of them are Europeans from Sweden, France and Britain, as well as a few hundred Australian nationals. They receive food and medical assistance from the International Red Cross and the Syrian Red Crescent.
“There are suspicions that there are dozens of Lebanese, including women and children of ISIS fighters, who are still holed up in some areas and are moving between the Syrian and Iraqi territories,” the sources said, citing the available information.
According to details obtained by the Lebanese security and judicial services, “the countries that have citizens in the camp are following up the situation of their nationals through their embassies in Lebanon. These embassies have explicitly warned of the escape of dozens of its militants into Lebanon across the uncontrolled border, or through mafias. They are transferred to the Palestinian camps” inside Lebanon.
“The danger is that European countries and Australia have deprived those citizens of their nationality and waived their legal rights so as not to bear the risk of being repatriated,” the sources noted.
“The said countries consider that women and children in al-Hol camp are no less dangerous than their parents because they have been indoctrinated with the ideology of extremist organizations,” they warned.
In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, State Commissioner to the Military Court Judge Peter Germanos stressed that the military judiciary has taken advanced steps to prosecute those belonging to terrorist organizations, but pointed out that no data or information was available on whether those persons have committed terrorist crimes or crimes against humanity in Syria.
“There are fears that some of these people are dangerous and had received mitigating sentences because of the lack of information about them,” he said.