Reports from security officials say heavy fighting has broken out between pro- and anti-government supporters in Lebanon’s central mountains overlooking the capital. Army tanks patrolled the streets of the port city Tripoli where a number of people were killed in fighting.
Referring to what he described as ‘attacks on innocent civilians’ Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said the situation was worse than in the fighting with Israel. He said: “What is going on in Beirut by the militia is something that Israel never dared to do.”
At least 44 people have been killed and almost 130 wounded in the fighting in Beirut when the Hizbollah briefly seized control of the capital after the pro-western government’s decision to target its military communications network.
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Omar Karami who supports the pro-Syria opposition appealed to his fellow citizens to beware of foreign influence in Lebanon: “I call upon everybody in Lebanon not to listen to the foreign countries. We had it. I feel that every foreign country is using us for its own interests,” he said.
Arab League foreign ministers meeting in Cairo for emergency talks are trying to find a solution to the most serious crisis in Lebanon since the civil war that ended in 1990. An Arab League official in Cairo said the foreign ministers would call for an immediate deal on forming a Lebanese national unity government.