Salafists carry black flags and shout slogans during a protest against the Syrian regime, in the northern city of Tripoli.
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The marginal Salafist community in the country's second city fear that they will ultimately pay the price of the recurring rounds of violence that have plagued Tripoli since the uprising in Syria erupted three years ago.Despite the impression that the Salafist community is at odds with the security forces, their concerns do not seem to extend beyond Tripoli, and their qualms with the security forces relate to a long and bitter issue closely tied to the arrests and prosecution of members of the Salafist community in Lebanon.When clashes typically erupt in Tripoli the word "Islamists" instantly pops up in the media. Salafists, however, affirm that while they are individuals with a righteous cause, the media often blames them for the actions of thugs. But outside the community, Salafism is becoming a trend, to the horror of most practicing Salafists. For Sheikh Noureddine Ghalayini, Islamists are paying the price of a stereotyped image, as every time chaos ensues in the city of Tripoli, they are immediately accused of inciting it.
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