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Lebanon holds security meeting after deadly clashes in Baalbek

Published: Updated:

Lebanon has held a security meeting on Saturday after clashes between militants of the powerful Shiite Hezbollah movement and members of a Sunni clan that left five people killed in the eastern city of Baalbek.

The meeting came after the Lebanese army tried to break up the clashes that killed two Hezbollah militants and head of the Sunni political party, al-Jamaa al-Islamiya.

“Members of the al-Shiah (Sunni Muslim) family opened fire at a Hezbollah checkpoint in the center of Baalbek, provoking militants to return fire,” a security official told Agence France-Presse.

According to the Associated Press, Hezbollah set up checkpoints in its strongholds after an Aug. 15 blast in Beirut’s southern suburbs that killed 27 people. Many resent the checkpoints.

Baalbek lies in the eastern Bekaa Valley close to the border with Syria, across which Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah guerrillas and Sunni Muslim fighters have travelled to join opposing forces in the Syrian civil war.

(With AFP, Associated Press and Reuters)