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Funeral for top Hezbollah commander marches in Sidon
Hezbollah members carry the coffin of Ali Bazzi during his funeral procession in Haret Saida, Monday, Dec. 9, 2013. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
Hezbollah members carry the coffin of Ali Bazzi during his funeral procession in Haret Saida, Monday, Dec. 9, 2013. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
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SIDON, Lebanon: Hezbollah held a funeral procession in the suburb of the coastal city of Sidon Monday for a top military commander who was killed in Syria a day earlier.

The procession was led by Hezbollah MP Ali Fayyad, the Imam of Haret Sayda Sheikh Abdel-Hussein Abdallah and a Hezbollah Commander, Ali Daoun.

Ali Bazzi's coffin was carried on the shoulders of Hezbollah members as the commander's friends fired shots in the air.

The large procession prompted the Lebanese Army to deploy at the northern entrance of the city and in several neighborhoods leading to Haret Sayda.

Sidon is the home of fugitive Salafi-labelled Sheikh Ahmad Assir who was a staunch critic of Hezbollah and its involvement in the Syrian crisis. Assir and his supporters were engaged in deadly armed clashes against the Army in June.

Bazzi is originally from the southern town of Bint Jbeil but his family moved to Sidon decades ago. His father owns a shoe shop in the area.

A Lebanese security source told The Daily Star Sunday that Bazzi was killed in a combat zone.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that Hezbollah fighters were killed during battles in Nabk, one of the last rebel-held areas in the Qalamoun region bordering Lebanon.

Hezbollah-backed regime forces have launched a military campaign to root out rebel forces in Qalamoun, near the border with Lebanon.

Residents of southern Lebanon said Sunday that two other Hezbollah fighters – Ali Saleh and Qassem Ghamloush – were also killed in Syria Sunday and buried.

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