Sidon attack suspects linked to Iran embassy raiders

Sidon attack suspects linked to Iran embassy raiders
Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:20:35

Suspects in the deadly overnight attack on the Lebanese Army in south Lebanon likely had links to both Salafi-labelled Sheikh Ahmad Assir and al-Qaeda affiliated al-Nusra Front.

The sources, speaking to The Daily Star on condition of anonymity, said Lebanese Army Intelligence was able to identify the fourth suspect killed in the vehicle that attacked a military checkpoint in Majdalyoun, east of Sidon, late Sunday.

The suspect was identified as Husam al-Sayyed, the brother of Palestinian Bahaeddine al-Sayyed who was in the GMC Envoy that attacked the Army, killing a sergeant and wounding a soldier.

Mohammad Jamil al-Zarif and Ibrahim al-Mir, both Lebanese, were also killed after troops returned fire toward the Envoy.

Shortly prior to the incident, gunmen in a Range Rover without license plates attacked an Army checkpoint on the Awali river bridge at Sidon’s northern entrance.

An Army statement said one of the assailants threw a hand grenade at the soldiers after they asked the driver to pull over, wounding two soldiers.
Soldiers manning the checkpoint gunned down the attacker in response.

The sources, according to preliminary investigation, said the suspects in the Majdalyoun attack may have links not only to Sheikh Assir but also the al-Nusra Front, the al-Qaeda-linked militant group in Syria fighting to overthrow the government.

Husam had only returned from Syria a month ago after having fought alongside militants, the sources said.

They said one of the four attackers had also appeared in a photo alongside Mouin Abu Dahr, one of two suicide bombers who attacked the Iranian Embassy in Beirut last month.

The Lebanese Army deployed Monday Armored Personnel Carriers in and around Sidon.

Heavy traffic is also reported along the Awali highway Monday due to vehicle search at the Lebanese Army checkpoint.


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