Lebanon News

Calm in Lebanon’s Tripoli after night of clashes

Lebanese soldiers on armored vehicles drive toward Bab al-Tabbaneh neighborhood of Tripoli. (File photo/The Daily Star/Antoine Amrieh)

TRIPOLI, Lebanon: Relative calm prevailed in the northern city of Tripoli Tuesday following a night of clashes between opponents and supporters of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The fighting with rocket-propelled grenades, mortar shells and machine gunfire reached its peak between midnight and 4 a.m. after which it dwindled into sporadic sniper fire.

The Lebanese Army, backed by policemen from the Internal Security Forces, redeployed early Tuesday on Syria street which separates the warring Tripoli neighborhoods of Jabal Mohsen and Bab al-Tabbaneh.

At least six people were killed and 56 wounded in the latest round of violence that broke out Friday in Lebanon’s second largest city.

Traffic returned to near-normal following the night clashes. Schools and universities, however, remained closed.

The fighting between gunmen of the mainly Sunni Bab al-Tabbaneh and rivals in mostly Alawite Jabal Mohsen began after eight people, including six children, were killed Friday in a rocket attack launched from Syria on the northeastern Lebanese town of Arsal.

Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen have been engaged in numerous rounds of deadly clashes since the uprising against the Syrian regime began in March 2011.

The Lebanese Army deployed units in Tripoli last year as part of a security plan to curb fighting between the two sides but have so far been unable to quell violence in the city.





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