Syrian army’s border violations trigger panic in Lebanese towns


Another Syrian patrol crossed the Lebanese borders, but this time in the North which triggered panic among residents, As-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper reported

According to the daily’s Thursday edition, “around ten Syrian soldiers entered the Lebanese territory in the northern town of Halwas and patrolled the area on Wednesday.”

The daily quoted an unnamed local resident as saying that “the people are scared of the behavior of Syrian soldiers.”

“It appears that the soldiers are launching a psychological war on the towns’ residents,” he said.

He added that “every day, we receive a warning that the Syrian army wants to raid our houses, which makes us want to evacuate.”

This incident follows another in the Bekaa , which took place on Tuesday. Syrian army tanks crossed the Lebanese border near the town of Aarsal and fired several gunshots within Lebanese territory.

Media outlets reported that the tanks fired in the direction of a battery factory in Aarsal, adding that the Syrian troops suspected fleeing gunmen had taken refuge in the building.

Thousands of Syrians have fled into Lebanon in recent months, often using illegal border crossings, to flee the unrest gripping their country.

The Lebanese opposition is outraged by the Syrian incursion

March 14 MP Mouin Merhebi said on Wednesday that President Michel Suleiman and the Lebanese army did not intervene when the Syrian army “entered Lebanese territories and forced an entry into citizens’ houses.”

“This is utterly shameful and unbearable,” Merhebi told Free Lebanon Radio.