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Sectarian tensions in Lebanon soared over the weekend after an ISIS flag was burned in Ashrafieh and churches were graffitied in Tripoli, with local politicians divided over how to react.A picture of three boys burning Islamic flags that have been adopted by jihad groups – including ISIS and Nusra Front – printed on large pieces of paper was widely circulated on social media Saturday morning. The incident took place in Ashrafieh's Sassine Square, a predominantly Christian neighborhood in Beirut, and emerged just a day after ISIS allegedly beheaded Ali al-Sayyed, a Lebanese soldier who was among 29 security personnel captured by Nusra Front and ISIS during five days of fighting in Arsal earlier last month. Rifi has asked State Prosecutor Samir Hammoud to follow up on the case, given that Lebanese law punishes acts that disrespect religious symbols and incite sectarian strife.Tourism Minister Michel Pharaon joined Rifi in condemning the burning of the flags.
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