Syria’s civil war has again spilled into Lebanon, leaving at least four dead. Gunmen fired on Lebanese soldiers and police after the arrest of a man accused of belonging to al Qaeda's Syrian affiliate, Al Nusra Front.
A group fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad crossed the border on Saturday, killing two civilians, wounding multiple people and capturing several soldiers at a security outpost near the border town of Arsal, Lebanon's official National News Agency reported.
The attack came after Lebanese soldiers arrested Imad Ahmad Jomaa, a Syrian man with suspected links to al Qaeda-affiliated al Nusra Front, one of several militant groups loosely affiliated with the rebels fighting Assad.
In fighting throughout the day, the group reportedly also killed at least two soldiers and took over a police station. According to the National News Agency, Arsal residents later freed officers at the station, though the Nusra fighters managed to capture some weapons and release several detainees.
Thousands of Syrians have taken refuge in Arsal from the civil war, which is estimated to have claimed more than 170,000 lives since it began as a series of peaceful protests against Assad in March 2011. Roughly 90 kilometers (55 miles) from Lebanon's capital, Beirut, Arsal is home to predominately Sunni Muslims, much like the bulk of Syria's rebels.
mkg/hc (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)