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SATURDAY, 19 APR 2014
08:05 PM Beirut time
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Police funding fighters in Lebanon’s Tripoli: Nasrallah
Fighters stand with their weapons inside a building in Tripoli's Bab al-Tabbaneh over the weekend.   (REUTERS/Omar Ibrahim)
Fighters stand with their weapons inside a building in Tripoli's Bab al-Tabbaneh over the weekend. (REUTERS/Omar Ibrahim)
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BEIRUT: Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah accused Tuesday the General Directorate of Lebanon’s police force of arming and funding fighters in the northern city of Tripoli, where frequent deadly clashes linked to the Syria crisis have been waged.

“The General Directorate of the Internal Security Forces has for years been funding armed groups and transporting ammunition in police vehicles,” Nasrallah said during an interview on OTV.

Nasrallah said violence in Lebanon’s second largest city could only be brought to a halt through the “state taking control of the security situation and a crisis cell being formed.”

He also denied allegations his party’s involvement in Syria was to blame for the eruption of fighting in Tripoli, saying Hezbollah was constantly being scapegoated for Lebanon’s woes.

Fighters in the Tripoli neighborhoods of Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen have frequently clashed over the crisis in neighboring Syria.

Lebanon on Monday put the port city under the command of the Army, in a bid to end the repeated battles between the supporters and opponents of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

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