Lebanese security chief tests positive for COVID-19 in U.S

Major General Abbas Ibrahim, head of Lebanon's General Security agency is seen in Beirut

BEIRUT (Reuters) – A top Lebanese security official has tested positive for COVID-19 in the United States, his department said on Monday, forcing him to delay his return from talks in Washington and to cancel scheduled meetings in Paris.

Major-General Abbas Ibrahim is in good health, the directorate of General Security, which he heads, added in a tweet.

Ibrahim met U.S. national security adviser Robert O’Brien at the White House last week to discuss American citizens held in Syria, the Wall Street Journal reported.

A Trump administration official confirmed that a White House official traveled to Damascus earlier this year for secret meetings with the Syrian government seeking the release of two U.S. citizens thought to be held there.

Last month Ibrahim held talks in Paris with French intelligence chief Bernard Emie about the formation of a new government to tackle Lebanon’s grave economic crisis, a Lebanese official said.

(Reporting by Dominic Evans; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

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