bARABie – Hard Hitting Facts

May 21, 2007

Aussies told to flee Lebanon

Filed under: Uncategorized — barabie @ 12:36 pm

Australians in northern Lebanon are being advised to leave the area after fighting between Lebanese troops and Islamic fighters left 40 people dead.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) today upgraded its travel advice for the Tripoli area in the north of the country following an escalation in violence.

Dozens were killed as a result of fierce gunbattles between soldiers and the Fatah al-Islam group, which has been accused of links to al-Qaeda.

Lebanese troops yesterday staged a daylight assault on a building in Tripoli where Fatah al-Islam militants were holed up after deadly shootouts in the northern port city and a nearby Palestinian refugee camp.

The army said the fighting was triggered when the militants staged an attack on a military post outside Nahr al-Bared, home to about 22,000 refugees.

And in Beirut, a 63-year-old woman was killed and 10 people wounded from a blast in the Christian quarter of Achrafie.

DFAT urged Australians to reconsider their need to travel to Lebanon because of the highly volatile security situation, which it said could deteriorate without warning and lead to widespread violence.

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