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Lebanon's central bank Chief denies misusing public funds

Beirut, Nov 18 (IANS) Lebanon's Central Bank Governor, Riad Salameh has denied media allegations that he transferred public funds to a company owned by his brother.

Salameh said in a statement that "not a single penny" was taken from public funds to pay fees and commissions to his brother's company Forry Associates Ltd, a firm whose transactions and investments have been the focus of media reports.

Salameh said his opponents had disseminated the false information.

He said that the source of his wealth was "clear and documented," as he had been a successful private banker at Merrill Lynch for around 20 years with an annual income of about $2 million before he left that company in 1993, Xinhua news agency reported.

Salameh recently came under heavy criticism following the collapse of the Lebanese pound. He was accused of enriching himself and his inner circle through years of corruption.