Lebanese Troops Battle Syrian Sponsored Al Qaeda Group- 48 Dead!
The Syrian-backed group– made up of Syrian, Palestinian, Lebanese, Saudi and other Arab Islamists who arrived via Syria after terrorist tours in Iraq.
LBC reported that the terrorists opened fire on ambulances, occupied residential buildings and used civilians as human shields –Beirut to the Beltway.
23 soldiers, 19 militants and 6 civilians are dead from the clashes!
Residents greet Lebanese army troops after clashes with militants of Fatah al-Islam group in Tripoli, northern Lebanon, May 20, 2007. Lebanese troops battled Islamist militants based in a Palestinian refugee camp on Sunday and 48 people were killed in Lebanon’s bloodiest internal fighting since the 1975-90 civil war. (REUTERS/ Omar Ibrahim)
At least 37 people have been killed in a day of fighting between Lebanese troops and gunmen from a Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon.
Some 14 fighters from the radical Fatah Islam group and 22 Lebanese soldiers died in intense battles, reports said.
Fatah Islam, said to be linked to al-Qaeda, killed some 15 soldiers in clashes around the Nahr el-Bared camp.
Soldiers then bombarded militants in the camp and fought battles at a house in Tripoli used as a base by fighters.
One civilian was reported killed and 40 civilians were injured, AFP news agency reported. A Lebanese army spokesman said another 27 soldiers were injured.
Lebanon is home to more than 350,000 Palestinian refugees, many of whom fled their homes when Israel was created in 1948.
The leader of Fatah al-Islam, Palestinian Shakir al-Absi, has admitted working with Zarqawi.
Farid Ghadry at Reform Party of Syria explained Syria’s relationship with Al Qaeda. The Al Qaeda-linked group are in the advanced planning stages for spectacular external attacks against civilian targets in Europe and the America.
Smoke rises from the Nahr al-Bared Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon May 20, 2007. Lebanese troops battled militants linked to al Qaeda in northern Lebanon on Sunday. (REUTERS/Omar Ibrahim)
Beirut to the Beltway has much more on the fighting calling it “Assad’s Volcano” erupting.
Ya Libnan has a roundup of the fighting that spread out from the camp into the nearby Sunni Muslim city of Tripoli in northern Lebanon. The Al Qaeda-linked group warned the Lebanese government:
“We warn the Lebanese army of the consequences of continuing the provocative acts against our mujahideen who will open the gates of fire … against (the army) and against the whole of Lebanon,” it said in a statement faxed to Reuters.
Palestinian fighters of the Fatah al-Islam group are shown undergoing military training in Nahr al-Bared refugee camp in northern Lebanon, in this March 23, 2007 file photo. (Reuters)
Lebanese soldiers and policemen take cover with civilians during clashes with the Palestinian ‘Fatah al-Islam’ group in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli. Fierce gunbattles raged in Lebanon on Sunday between soldiers and shadowy Islamic extremist fighters accused of links to Al-Qaeda, leaving 40 dead in the bloodiest such clashes in seven years.(AFP/Ramzi Haidar)
Lebanese soldiers capture a militant after clashes with Fatah al-Islam group in Tripoli, northern Lebanon, May 20, 2007. Lebanese troops battled al Qaeda-linked militants based in a Palestinian refugee camp on Sunday and 38 people were killed in Lebanon’s bloodiest internal fighting since the 1975-90 civil war. (REUTERS/ Omar Ibrahim)
HotAir has more analysis of the situation facing Lebanon.
UPDATE: A bomb went off at a Lebanon mall later today. One woman was killed in the blast.