The situation remains tense in the Beirut suburb of Bourj Hammoud - Nabaa, following last week's outbreak of sniper fire and shelling.
The situation remains tense in the Beirut suburb of Bourj Hammoud - Nabaa, following last week's outbreak of sniper fire and shelling. The feuding Armenian and Rightist gunmen have agreed to a ceasefire, but only after seventy - two hours of fighting which left thirty people dead and scores injured.
SYNOPSIS: The fighting raged for three days through the streets of East Beirut. Anti-tank rockets, heavy machine guns and automatic rifles were used in the fighting. Now the two sides have agreed to an uneasy truce.
The violence began when the Right-Wing forces accused the Armenians of firing on one of its patrols.
It is also believed that the attacks on the Armenians were carried out as a police-type-action to crack down on the gambling and drug operations in the Lebanese capital. Security forces have put the death toll at about twenty-five however newspaper reports say the number of killed was at least thirty, maybe even higher. The Armenian Tashnaq Party accused the militias of launching a campaign of terror against Armenians and the Falagist newspaper Al-Amal countered that criticism by saying the Armenians were in fact trying to set up an autonomous area in East Beirut. Armenians have alleged that there is an organised campaign to repress their community and force them to change their policy of complete neutrality.
The ceasefire appears to be holding, however there has been sporadic shooting during the past few days.
Also in Beirut on Saturday (15 September), thousand of women marched through the streets with banners and placards, demanding an end to the civil war and a return of the country to democratic sovereignty. The marchers were given protection by the newly-formed Lebanese army. Meanwhile it has been learned that Andrew Young the former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, will be visiting Lebanon later this year to hold talks with Palestinian Liberation Organisation Chairman, Yaseer Arafat. Sources in Beirut said the meeting is tentatively planned for November, while Mr Young is making a tour of the Middle East.
The said that no firm date bas been fixed, and that Mr. Young would confer with Mr. Arafat as a private citizen, not as an official representative of the United States.