• Short Summary

    Syrian sponsored peace negotiations were continuing in the Lebanon on Thursday (5 February) as many people began repairing the damage to their homes and properties caused during the bloody fighting between left and right wing Christian and Moslem factions.

  • Description

    Syrian sponsored peace negotiations were continuing in the Lebanon on Thursday (5 February) as many people began repairing the damage to their homes and properties caused during the bloody fighting between left and right wing Christian and Moslem factions.

    But while the peace meetings and the first signs of life returning to normal were happening, at least one group was preparing for future fighting.

    The "Lebanese Arab Army" was founded by Lieutenant Ahmed Al-Khatib, a former officer of the regular Lebanese Army.

    Reports from Lebanese military authorities indicate that at least 600 men deserted the regular army in favour of the new breakaway group.

    Lieutenant Al-Khatib, a Moslem, has previously accused the regular army command of bias towards the right wing Christians .. and has stated that his army "will be for the whole Lebanese people".

    Meanwhile, in Bkerki .. north of Beirut .. Syrian Foreign Minister Abdel Halim Khaddam continued his peace moves on Thursday when he visited Maronite Christian Patriarch Antonios Khoreish.

    He was accompanied by Major-General Naji Jamail, Syrian Deputy Defence Minister and Air Forece Commander, and Major-General Himat Shehabi, Syria's Army Chief of Staff.

    After the meeting, Mr. Khaddam issued a brief statement to waiting newsmen which read: "Everything is fine, we will return soon."
    And the return of the middle class and wealthy Lebanese who left the country during the bitter violence is also causing hope for the future.

    Officials at Beirut Airport claim some 6,000 people have returned since the now two week ceasefire took hold.

    In Damour, millionaire Christian Maronite Emile Rizk has returned to the southern town and announced major re-building plans.

    Rizk, who lost five buildings during the fighting, is one of the key figures in the running of the 30,000 strong town and the news of his plans has given the locals a great lift.

    The final step in the current, delicate peace moves comes on Saturday (7 February) when Lebanese President Suleiman Franjieh travels to Damascus to set the seal on a Syrian engineered peace formula.

    The terms of the peace agreement have not been disclosed, but observers believe it is the only compromise solution acceptable to all major parties in the conflict.

    SYNOPSIS: The residence of Antonios Khoreish .. Patriarch of the Lebanese Christian Maronite Church .. was the scene of yet another peace meeting on Thursday. Syrian Foreign Minister Abdel Halim Khaddam met with the Patriarch to finalise details of a Syrian engineered peace formula for the Lebanon. After Thursday's meeting, Mr. Khaddam issued only a brief statement which read: "Everything is fine, we will return soon".

    While the peace meeting continues, at least one group is preparing for further bloody fighting. These men are deserters from the Lebanese regular army. They've joined the newly formed "Lebanese Arab Army" founded by Lieutenant Ahmed Al-Khatib.

    Despite the tension that still remains in the strife torn country, many middle class and wealthy Lebanese are returning to the country and inspecting the damage to their homes. One is millionaire Christian Maronite Emile Rizk. The 75-year-old self made tycoon is the cornerstone of the 30,000 strong Christian town of Damour just south of Beirut. He returned to Damour on Thursday to inspect damage to his properties. Although he was uninsured for war damage. Mr. Rizk says he will rebuild and start again in Damour... a statement that has created great hope for the future of the town.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA15RNOYJF6SBK2E7LCQP9EPTSR
    Media URN:
    VLVA15RNOYJF6SBK2E7LCQP9EPTSR
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    06/02/1976
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:54:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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