BEIRUT: A number of Lebanon’s Sunni leaders called on security agencies to adopt an urgent plan to end the fighting in the northern city of Tripoli Friday, after six days of battles killed 24 people.
Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati, Prime Ministe designate Tammam Salam and former prime ministers Omar Karami and Fouad Siniora made the plea to restore order in the city.
“We call on security agencies to implement an urgent plan to prevent an armed presence in all the neighborhoods and streets of the city of Tripoli in order to reach an arms-free Tripoli,” said a statement following a meeting at Mikati’s office at the Grand Serail in Downtown Beirut.
The statement also rejected the “militia-like armed presence” elsewhere in Lebanon and called on security and judicial authorities to take measures to stop those tampering with the country’s security.
The leaders condemned attacks on the Lebanese Army in Tripoli and called on military and security institutions to “strike with an iron fist at anyone who violates the law or carries arms regardless to which party he belongs.”
Two Lebanese Army soldiers were among the dead in the latest bout of fighting that broke out Sunday and has killed 24 people. Many other soldiers were among the wounded that security officials say has reached 200 casualties.