Sehnaoui takes over disputed floor of Adliyeh telecom building

Telecommunications Minister Nicolas Sehnaoui on Friday seized control of the second floor of a building owned by his ministry in Beirut’s Adliyeh neighborhood; months after the Internal Security Forces (ISF) were accused of “illegally occupying it.”

“The Telecom Ministry issued a decision to recover the second floor that was seized by Ogero Telecom Company,” the National News Agency reported.

It added that following the decision, Sehanoui ordered his staff to “break into the floor because it was locked.”

“The minister then entered the place and [demanded] his staff to install a new lock with codes that remain in the custody of the Telecom Ministry,” the NNA said. However, it did not elaborate further.

In May, then-telecom minister Charbel Nahhas  –who represents the Free Patriotic Movement – and Ogero Director General Abdel Monem Youssef engaged in a controversial dispute after ISF units deployed in the building. The ISF said it was deployed  at the request of Ogero “to protect a phone network against Nahhas’s illegal intention to dismantle it.”

The Lebanese army later took control of the building.

The FPM has been in charge of the Telecommunications Ministry since 2008, with Sehnaoui running it after he replaced Nahhas.

-NOW Lebanon