Middle East

Lebanon arrests 'Israeli spy' from mobile phone company

Armed Soldier at the Lebanese Parliament (file)
Image caption Lebanon launched a crackdown on suspected spy networks in April 2009

Lebanon has arrested a man accused of spying for Israel for more than 15 years, the country's Telecommunications Minister Charbel Nahhas has said.

Mr Nahhas said the man was a technician with one of the country's two main mobile networks, and could have had access to sensitive information.

Lebanon has made a series of similar arrests in the last year, as part of an operation to dismantle spy networks.

Israel has not commented on the arrest.

Mr Nahhas told the BBC the arrest took place a few days ago.

He denied local media reports that the man was a senior official at the mobile network operator, but said he could have had access to sensitive information, the BBC's Maha Barada reports from Beirut.

Lebanon and Israel remain in an official state of war.

Since last year, the Lebanese authorities have arrested dozens of people who are accused of collaborating with Israel, most suspected of leaking information about the militant group, Hezbollah.

Convicted spies face life in prison with hard labour or death, if found guilty of contributing to the loss of Lebanese life.

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