Fighting between Palestinian and Israeli artillery forces broke out in Southern Lebanon, following the bombardment of Lebanese coastal towns by Israeli warplanes on Wednesday and Thursday (10 and 11 April).
Fighting between Palestinian and Israeli artillery forces broke out in Southern Lebanon, following the bombardment of Lebanese coastal towns by Israeli warplanes on Wednesday and Thursday (10 and 11 April). And as trouble brewed in the south, outside the capital of Beirut, thousands of right-wing Christian Falangists marked the fourth anniversary of the Lebanese Civil War, on Thursday (12 April), with a large rally.
SYNOPSIS: Four years ago, Lebanon was thrown into a bitter and bloody conflict, which left 60,000 dead, Beirut a divided city, and the country with a legacy of continued hostility. What had started as a battle between the Falangists and Palestinian guerrillas, has spread to a much wider conflict pitting Left against Right, Christian against Muslim and rich against poor. Heading the Falangists is their Christian Militia Commander, Bashir Gemayel.
Gemayel's father founded the Falange movement inspired by Franco's Fascist party in the Spanish civil war, and it is also known by the Arab name Kata'Eb -- meaning fighters for God, family and fatherland. The Falangists are said to see themselves as the Christian saviours of Lebanon.
After Gemayel had unveiled a plaque on Thursday (12 April) commemorating the 1975 civil war outbreak, he told the banner-carrying crowd that the Christians would not give up one inch of Lebanese territory.
And as he has done on previous occasions, he also attacked supporters of the Palestinian cause and accused them of interfering in Lebanese affairs.
He said the continued presence of Syrian troops in Lebanon would lead to further war.