News / Middle East

Lebanon Battles Syria Militants Along Border

Lebanese army reinforcements arrive to the outskirts of Arsal, a predominantly Sunni Muslim town near the Syrian border in eastern Lebanon, Aug. 4, 2014.
Lebanese army reinforcements arrive to the outskirts of Arsal, a predominantly Sunni Muslim town near the Syrian border in eastern Lebanon, Aug. 4, 2014.
VOA News

Lebanese troops are battling Islamic militants near the Syrian border in a third day of fierce clashes — the worst spillover of violence since Syria's civil war broke out three years ago.

Lebanon's army reported Monday that at least 16 of its soldiers have been killed in the fighting that erupted in the town of Arsal, while another 22 are missing. It said that advancing soldiers have found the bodies of 50 militants.

Click to enlargeClick to enlarge
x
Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Hundreds of Lebanese civilians and Syrian refugees crammed into cars and pickup trucks during a relative lull in the fighting in the early morning hours to flee Arsal. But intense fighting soon resumed.

The fighting erupted Saturday after the rebels were angered by the Lebanese detention of a Syrian, Imad Ahmad Jomaa, who is believed to be a member of al-Qaida's Syrian affiliate, the al-Nusra Front. It is one of the most powerful groups fighting to oust Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

The Lebanese army warned of the seriousness of fighting and vowed to keep the Syrian conflict from spreading into its much-smaller country.

The U.S. State Department strongly condemned the rebels' attack.  

Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam called the raid an attack against Lebanon and its people.

Salam says his government will not tolerate chaos and let matters get out of control. He says the army is working to restore security and stability in the Arsal region.

Violence stemming from the fighting in Syria often spills over into Lebanon.

Lebanese-based Hezbollah extremists have fought alongside Syrian government forces against the rebels trying to topple the Assad government.

Some information in this report was provided by AP and AFP.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

Video Scientists Say We Need Softer Robots

Today’s robots are mostly hard, rigid machines, with sharp edges and forceful movements, but researchers at Carnegie Mellon University say they should be softer and therefore safer More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: RationalRick from: USA
August 05, 2014 3:12 AM
Do you really think Israel needed to call up 30,000 to 40,000 Reserves just to fight Hamas in Gaza? No. They are getting the military up and ready for a flanking maneuver by ISIS through Lebanon, which ISIS has started now. Go through the weak link Lebanon, they encircle Jordan which they probably don't want to fight, go around Damascus and get resupplied from the sea. Isis can start a two front war with Israel in the north and northeast Golan Heights, with Hamas help in the south. Israel is getting ready for the fight of their lives.
In Response

by: Bartholomeo from: Lebanon
August 05, 2014 9:17 AM
very smart observation... there were no more than 2000 Israelis who fought Hamas... the rest were preparing for fight elsewhere...over 3000 conducted "maneuvers" in Northern Israel...Why..? the whole Arab world is silenced... i believe Israel is about to inflict some devastation on ISIL... with all the bullshit we say about Israel they do not want to see their Arab neighbors destroyed. They will not allow Lebanon to be murdered by ISIL.

by: TK from: Lebanon
August 04, 2014 1:00 PM
please do not say "Lebanon Military" say it like it is - its Hezbullah that fight against the Sunni Arabs - its an Iranian shia terrorist organization that destroyed our beautiful country.
In Response

by: Anonym
August 04, 2014 4:43 PM
Get your head out of the sand, Arsal is being fought by the lebanese military they may have backing from Hezb soon but the fight is with lebanese Military against these fanatic Cockroaches, I am no supporter of Hezb but you will be deluding yourself if you think for a moment that this wouldn't have happened eventually Hezb or not, they take over iraq, syria and then they will come for you whether you like it or not, and no one in the world will come to your aid, just open your eyes and look around you, did they come for Iraq's aid when it fell? hell no and that place is full of oil, you think they will come for Leb? think again. so why don't you say it like it is, support the army for saving your sorry ass or be ashamed of yourself.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs