The Qalamoun mountains as seen from Brital, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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Security sources meanwhile contend the northeastern border town will not likely be targeted by ISIS or the Nusra Front.The Lebanese Army strictly monitors individuals, especially Syrian nationals, entering and leaving Arsal, reinforcing its checkpoints leading to the outskirts of Arsal, where militants are positioned across a 30 km stretch. Arsal's residents are concerned about the implications of infighting between ISIS and the Nusra Front, as well as the Free Syria Army in the Syrian border area of Qalamoun. One resident claimed that three officials from Raqqa, ISIS' de facto capital in Syria, had arrived in Qalamoun, bringing with them 2,000 fighters.A Lebanese security source agreed that ISIS was strengthening its capabilities in Qalamoun, especially areas bordering Arsal, Al-Qaa and Ras Baalbek.
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