Heavy shelling and fierce gun battles raged in Tripoli overnight Friday between pro- and anti-Assad fighters, leaving at least 24 people dead in six days of clashes in the northern city.
Security sources’ count of the wounded increased to 200 since the fighting erupted Sunday between supporters of Syrian President Bashar Assad in the predominantly Alawite neighborhood of Jabal Mohsen and pro-Syrian uprising fighters in nearby mainly Sunni Bab al-Tabbaneh.
Nearly 1,200 mortar shells and rocket-propelled grenades were fired in Tripoli between 9 pm Thursday and 7 am Friday, security sources said.
The fight may have spread beyond the traditional neighborhood battle lines as masked gunmen fought a nearly two-hour battle with Lebanese troops in the Khnaq alleyway of Abu Samra, in southern Tripoli, after midnight......
The death toll from clashes in Lebanon's Tripoli has risen to 23 as cautious calm prevailed in the northern city Friday after fierce battles between pro- and anti-Syria neighborhoods, a local security source told Xinhua.
According to the source, the calm had been occasionally violated by intermittent sniper bullets and a rocket that hit Naji Center, where only material damage was caused.
At least 11 people were killed Thursday following gunfire broke out a day before between Alawite neighborhood of Jabal Mohsen backing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and Sunni neighborhood of Bab al-Tabbaneh, the opponents of the Syrian administration.
The Lebanese army is preparing to enter Bab al-Tabbaneh after it has fortified its presence in Jabal Mohsen.
The latest violence began as the Syrian troops launched an offensive on the rebel stronghold of al-Qussair near the border with Lebanon..............