On Tuesday the cabinet appointed Brigadier-General Wafiq Jizzini, an army officer, as the new head of the Interior Ministry's General Security Department.

 

He replaced Major-General Jamil Sayyid, who resigned in April and was arrested in 30 August after being implicated with three other top generals in the 14 February assassination of former prime minister Rafiq al-Hariri.

 

Information Minister Ghazi al-Aridi told reporters after a cabinet meeting that the plan to reform the security services would be discussed later.

 

Deteriorating security

 

The cabinet's decision came after months of political wrangling, and it was the government's first serious attempt to tackle the deteriorating security situation.

 

Lebanon has witnessed a series of mysterious explosions in the past eight months, and the government has acknowledged that it is nowhere close to arresting the culprits.

 

Last month, a bomb blew up the car of a prominent journalist who worked for an anti-Syrian TV channel, causing her to lose her left arm and leg. Another anti-Syrian journalist and a politician have been killed in similar car bombings.