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Lebanon News

Syria rockets wound 4 in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley

People check the site of a rocket attack near Saint Elias Church, seen left, in Ras Baalbek, Friday, Jan. 17, 2014. (The Daily Star/Nidal Solh)

BEIRUT: A barrage of rockets from Syria hit two towns in the Bekaa Valley, wounding four people Saturday, a security source told The Daily Star, a day after a rocket attack killed eight in the northeastern town of Arsal.

Eleven rockets landed in Arsal, where a rocket attack killed eight including four children from the same family Friday.

Eleven missiles also hit the northeastern village of Ras Baalbek, wounding Thaer al-Rai, Rifaat Nasrallah, Tony Ghanem and Edward Shoaib.

The wounded remain in a stable condition.

One of the missiles hit the yard of St. Elias Church in Ras Baalbek, prompting the head of the parish in the village, Father Ibrahim Naamo, to condemn the attacks that have been gripped the Bekaa Valley towns for two days.

"We regret the attacks on Ras Baalbek particularly that it is a village acknowledged for its coexistence.”

"The attack is aimed at sowing strife between the residents," he added.

Friday's attack on predominantly Sunni Arsal came one day after a car bomb rocked the mainly Shiite town of Hermel, also in the northeastern Bekaa Valley, killing five.

Military Prosecutor Saqr Saqr launched an investigation Saturday into the fatal Friday rocket attack on Arsal. He also tasked a military expert to determine its source.

Meanwhile, caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati tasked the High Relief Committee to examine the damages and compensate the residents.

Residents of Arsal are supporters of the Syrian uprising and the town hosts thousands of Syrian refugees.

The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack, according to social media websites belonging to the group. The sites circulated a statement reportedly by ISIS saying that its fighters launched rockets against Free Syria Army locations in Arsal Friday.

Arsal Mayor Ali Hujeiri accused Hezbollah of firing the rockets, but the resistance group denied the allegations, describing such accusations as “dangerous.”

The Lebanese Army said Friday 27 rockets from Syria were fired into Lebanon, causing material damage and loss of life.

 

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Summary

A barrage of rockets from Syria hit two towns in the Bekaa Valley, wounding four people Saturday, a security source told The Daily Star, a day after a rocket attack killed eight in the northeastern town of Arsal.

Eleven rockets landed in Arsal, where a rocket attack killed eight including four children from the same family Friday.

One of the missiles hit the yard of St. Elias Church in Ras Baalbek, prompting the head of the parish in the village, Father Ibrahim Naamo, to condemn the attacks that have been gripped the Bekaa Valley towns for two days.


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