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Israel Releases Lebanese Journalist

An Israeli court has released a Lebanese journalist who was arrested last month in the security zone and brought to Israel after being accused of helping Hezbollah plan and carry out attacks on Israeli forces.

The journalist, Ali Daya, 40, was abruptly allowed to return to his home in southern Lebanon on Thursday, a day after the Acre Magistrates Court had extended his detention by six days.

Daya, a Shi’ite Muslim, is a part-time reporter for the Agence France-Presse news agency.

France criticized Israel for his arrest, saying that it was an assault on press freedom.

It remained unclear why Daya was suddenly released, but it was reported earlier this week that the prosecution had encountered difficulty gathering witnesses and evidence against him.

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