US citizen detained in Lebanon on suspicion of entering from Israel

The two countries are in a state of war and each bans its citizens from visiting the other country.

17 January 2019 | 17:30

Source: Associated Press

  • Source: Associated Press
  • Last update: 17 January 2019 | 17:30

In this Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, photo, a bulldozer works near a wall at the Israel Lebanon border near Rosh Haniqra, northern Israel, Israel is building a massive wall along its northern border, saying the barrier is needed to protect civilians from Hezbollah attacks, but the project has raised tensions with Lebanon, which fears the fence will encroach on its territory. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

BEIRUT: Lebanon’s army intelligence have detained a man on suspicion that he crossed into Lebanon from Israel, a military official said Thursday. The country’s state news agency said the detainee is a U.S. citizen.

The man was identified as Colin Emery and allegedly entered Lebanon on January 15, 2019. 

Lebanon and Israel are in a state of war and each bans its citizens from visiting the other country. There are no border crossings at the tightly-controlled frontier.

The official, who spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity in line with regulations, gave no further details saying the man is being questioned and once they have information the army will release a statement.

State-run National News Agency said the man who was detained is a U.S. citizen adding that he was detained in the southern port-city of Tyre where he had been staying since Tuesday. It added that the man is being questioned under the supervision of judicial authorities.

There was no immediate comment from the U.S. embassy in Lebanon.

Suspicion about someone crossing the tightly guarded border known as the Blue Line began to surface on Tuesday.

The Israeli military said: “Israeli army troops identified a break in the fence and signs that point to the suspicion of a person crossing the border from Israel into Lebanon. The incident is under investigation.”

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