TRIPOLI, Lebanon: Sporadic sniper fire left one man dead Thursday in northern city of Tripoli Thursday, violating a shaky truce aimed at putting an end to the violence.
Mohammad Sulteye was gunned down in Jabal Mohsen Thursday afternoon.
Earlier, cautious calm had prevailed in rival neighborhoods of the anti-Assad Sunni dominant Bab al-Tabbaneh district and the pro-Assad Alawite area of Jabal Mohsen following three days of deadly clashes that killed at least 12 and wounded over 70, including 11 soldiers.
The periodic sounds of gunshots coupled with sniper fire came as no surprise Thursday given that some groups in Bab al-Tabbaneh had not agreed to the cease-fire.
In a bid to resolve the crisis in the city, political and security officials met at Future Movement lawmaker Mohammad Kabbara’s residence Wednesday and orchestrated a truce agreed to by leaders from Jabal Mohsen which went into effect at 5:30 p.m.
The officials also called on the Lebanese Army to deploy in all conflict zones. Army units strengthened their presence along Syria Street, with a symbolic presence in both neighborhoods.
Lebanon’s Defense Minister Fayez Ghosn defended the army’s performance Thursday, saying the military is doing its best given its minimal capabilities.
“The Tripoli problem between Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen in particular is chronic and only needed a few issues for it to reignite, but the Army is trying to control the situation according to the available capabilities,” Ghosn told a local radio station.
The minister also warned that if the fighting continued, all of Lebanon would be affected.