The tide is progressively turning towards the release and deportation of Georges Ibrahim Abdallah back to Lebanon, according to a senior French source to al-Hayat,
The fate of the Lebanese leftist is currently being discussed by “top French leaders,” the pan-Arab newspaper reported, and seem to point towards an imminent liberation of the Lebanese leftist, who has been imprisoned in France for 28 years.
France has already warned Lebanon not to plan an official reception for Abdallah’s return, for fear of stoking American and Israeli anger. The two countries have played a crucial role in lobbying for Abdallah’s continued detention.
Abdallah was jailed over his alleged involvement in the murder of two diplomats from the United States and Israel in 1982.
The murky case was later described by Yves Bonnet, who headed the French intelligence agency at the time, as a “national revenge” for other acts committed in France by Abdallah’s Lebanese Armed Revolutionary Factions.
His sentence exceeds the French legal limit for the maximum sentence by ten years.
He was granted parole on 21 November 2012, and despite appeals by the prosecution, the ruling was upheld in court earlier this month despite US and Israeli pressure to keep him locked up.
The Representative Council Jewish Institutions in France (CRIF) has called Abdallah’s potential release “an apologia of armed struggle and terrorism.”
His eighth appeal for parole was granted on the condition that he be expelled from France.
A court ordered his released on January 14, but French Interior Minister Manuel Valls refused to sign an expulsion order, a necessary condition for Abdallah’s release.
Abdallah supporters have been anxiously awaiting a hearing scheduled for January 28, which could give a clearer idea of when – or if – he will be released.
Al-Hayat, however, wrote that the decision could also take place next month, as any potential appeal would most likely be set for March 14.