Photo: EPA, AFP
Hezbollah's Nassrallah and Syria's Assad
Photo: EPA, AFP

Report: Hezbollah, Syrian rebels clash in Lebanon

Lebanese site reports Hezbollah man killed in clashes between Syrian rebels, Shiite terror group on Lebanese soil, in additional incident of spillover from Syrian conflict into neighboring countries

A clash erupted overnight Saturday between a Hezbollah patrol and armed Syrians on the outskirts of Lebanese town, Lebanese media outlets reported Sunday.


According to Now Lebanon, the Hezbollah patrol detected a group of armed Syrians in the Bekaa area, and a firefight between the two parties ensued. The clash ended in the death of one Hezbollah man and the injury of another, the report said.


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The report, which quoted the An-Nahar news website, further claimed that the Syrians also suffered casualties.


Voice of Lebanon radio was quoted as reporting that “Ali Dirgham Fares was killed and another man was hurt in clashes between members of Hizbollah and fighters from the Free Syrian Army and the (al-Qaeda-inspired) al-Nusra Front in the barren mountains of the Bekaa town of Nahle."


Nahle lies to the east of east of Syria’s Qalamoun, where Bashar Assad’s regime forces and Hezbollah men have battled rebels since mid-November.


Hezbollah chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah and his Shiite terror group's media mouthpieces have constantly attempted to frame the rebel presence in Qalamoun as a threat to Lebanon’s security.


But according to Now Lebanon, newspaper unaffiliated with the terror group reported that the Qalamoun battle could lead to an influx of Syrian rebel fighters into Lebanese territory.


In early June, Now Lebanon reported, Hezbollah fighters engaged in a firefight with Syrian rebels on the outskirts of Baalbek along the Syrian-Lebanese border.


AFP cited a security source as saying that at least one Hezbollah member was killed in the fighting on the Syrian side of the border.


Meanwhile in Aleppo

Syrian aircraft pummeled opposition areas in the northern city of Aleppo on Sunday, killing at least 32 people and extending the government's furious aerial bombardment of the rebel-held half of the divided city to an eighth consecutive day.


Since it began on Dec. 15, the government's unusually heavy air campaign in Aleppo has killed more than 200 people, smashed residential buildings and overwhelmed the city's hospitals with casualties. The timing of the assault – a month ahead of planned peace talks in Switzerland – suggests that Syrian President Assad could be trying to strengthen his position and expose the opposition's weaknesses before sitting down at the negotiating table.


Sunday's air raids targeted several Aleppo neighborhoods, but the worse hit was Masaken Hanano, where bombs fell on a second-hand market, a two-story building and a main road, activists said.

The Aleppo Media Center activist group said at least 32 people were killed, and published a list of the names of the dead on its Facebook page. Another group, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said in a later statement that at least 47 people, including seven rebels, were killed and dozens wounded.


"The medics say they are removing people in parts; they aren't sure how many there are," said Hassoun Abu Faisal, an activist with the Aleppo Media Center. He said the bombs destroyed vehicles lining a main road, destroyed a two-story building and left a crater where part of the market was.


AFP and the Associated Press contributed to this report



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פרסום ראשון: 12.22.13, 21:15
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