Lebanese army raids refugee camps in wake of attacks

Lebanese army raids refugee camps in wake of attacks

BEIRUT: The Lebanese army on Tuesday detained 103 Syrian refugees during a series of raids carried out on makeshift refugee camps in the country’s eastern Baalbek region.

The move came one day after a village near Lebanon’s border with war-torn Syria was rocked by two separate waves of suicide bombings.

According to an army statement, 103 Syrians were detained in raids on several makeshift refugee camps — located in six villages near the Baalbek region — for “illegal residence”.

Two Lebanese nationals were also arrested for illegal weapons possession, the army said.

Tuesday’s raids and arrests came one day after five people were killed in multiple suicide bombings in Qaa, a predominantly-Christian town near the Syrian border.

Lebanon has been hard-hit by the ongoing conflict in next-door Syria, which has remained in the throes of a devastating civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Hezbollah, Lebanon’s most powerful political group, has been fighting alongside Assad regime forces since the conflict in Syria erupted more than five years ago.

The Shia group has not disclosed how many of its fighters have been killed in Syria, but the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights puts the number at more than 1,000.

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