Palestinian killed in Lebanon camp clashes

Residents of Nahr al-Bared camp blame soldiers for death as arrests of two Palestinians trigger violence.

    Clashes in a Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon have left one man dead and at least 10 others injured, security sources and witnesses say.

    Friday's violence at the Nahr al-Bared camp broke out after the army arrested two young Palestinians on a motorbike who had refused to present their ID papers at a checkpoint.

    A Palestinian source said a crowd of several hundred residents had then cut the main road through the camp with blazing tyres and threw stones at soldiers who opened fire into the air.

    Residents blamed the army for the death.

    Relations between camp residents and the army have been tense since the troops fought an al-Qaeda inspired group in the camp in 2007 in a months-long deadly conflict.

    Friday's incident set off protests in the Baddawi refugee camp a few kilometres away, where demonstrators blocked a road to nearby Tripoli, the country's second city.

    "If the two young people are not freed, tensions will increase," warned Khalil Dib, an official with the Fatah-Intifada Palestinian movement.

    Nahr al-Bared camp was almost totally destroyed in 2007 during the conflict between the Lebanese military and the  Fatah al-Islam group.

    The fighting killed about 400 people, including 168 soldiers, and deadly clashes also broke out in Tripoli.

    The military controls access to the camp and has checkpoints inside Nahr al-Bared, making it the only Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon under the direct control of the Lebanese security forces.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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