Ziad Doueiri Source: Facebook/DoueiriZiad

Early on Monday, a Lebanese military court cleared filmmaker Ziad Doueiri of charges after he was asked to attend a hearing upon arriving in Beirut on Sunday night, Annahar reported

According to an anonymous source, Judge Saqr Saqr cleared the filmmaker because he found "no criminal offense in the case."

Speaking to reporters outside the courtroom, Doueiri said

"The Lebanese state treated me fairly and general security personnel were very respectful towards me. It's only a few journalists who are accusing me of being a traitor and launching a calculated attack against my latest film." 

Doueiri was stopped at Beirut Airport on Sunday

Late on Sunday, Lebanese social media was abuzz with news that Lebanese filmmaker Ziad Doueiri had been arrested at the Rafiq Hariri International Airport, for visiting Israel five years back. 

Early news reports stated that Doueiri had been arrested upon his arrival from Venice, where he had attended the premiere of his latest film The Insult. 

However, in a statement to Annahar, the filmmaker explained that he hadn't been arrested but had both his Lebanese and French passports confiscated. 

He was also ordered to attend a military tribunal "for further investigation." 

In another statement he made to AFP News agency, Doueiri said: 

"I am profoundly hurt. I came back to Lebanon with a prize from Venice. The Lebanese police have authorised the broadcast of my film (The Insult). I have no idea who is responsible for what has happened. We will find out at court who is behind this affair." 

Doueiri had visited Lebanon several times since his 2012 visit to Israel, including a trip during which he filmed his latest feature film, The Insult. He had never faced any problems entering the country prior to the latest incident. 

The feature received rave reviews after its premiere earlier last week and earned Palestinian actor Kamel El Basha a Volpi Cup for best actor at the Venice Film Festival. 

The Insult has also been officially selected to represent Lebanon at the 90th Academy Awards.

The 2012 controversial visit to Israel

Doueiri visited Israel using his French passport in 2012 and stayed in the territory during the filming of his feature, The Attack.

"Adapted from the best-selling book by Yasmina Khadra, 'The Attack' follows the story of an Israeli surgeon of Arab origin whose wife is the perpetrator of a suicide attack."

The film caused quite the stir at the time of its release and was banned from screening because it was shot in Israel, an occupying state that Lebanon officially considers an enemy

Under Lebanese law, nationals can be prosecuted and risk jail time if they are found to have contact with Israelis or if they travel or visit Israel.

The country also prohibits the support of Israeli products and bans films featuring Israeli actors. 

At the time, Doueiri defended the feature and expressed shock over the intense backlash it received all over the Arab world. 

Lebanese are divided over the latest news

As soon as news of the latest incident began to circulate on social media, thousands reacted to it via the now trending hashtag: 'Ziad Doueiri.'

People's opinions varied, and while many attacked Doueiri and lauded the confiscation of his passports, others defended him and were outraged by the entire thing. 

Many stood against Doueiri

"No offense to those who claim to defend freedom of expression, it doesn't justify betraying your own country and leaping into Israel's arms."  

"A creative artist is one who fights against Israel rather than work for them"

"It's a law"

However, others were just not having it

"Shame on a country whose officials smuggle out ISIS fighters while they arrest and persecute the talented Ziad Doueiri." 

A few raised important points and questions

"This is about political manipulation, not about implementation of the law"

"Punishing its own since 1975"

"Where was their love for this country when they cheered on war criminals?"

"There are those who are going to take advantage of our support for Ziad Doueiri to claim they love this country more than we do. But where was their love for this country when they cheered on war criminals?"

A few launched hashtags in support of Doueiri

Editor's note: This article has been updated to report that Doueiri has been cleared of all charges.