5 soldiers injured as a result of Ain al-Hilweh clashes: Lebanese Army
The Lebanese army says three shells hit two of its units deployed in the vicinity of the Ain al-Hilweh camp amid ongoing clashes.
The Lebanese army confirmed on Sunday that five of its soldiers were injured as a result of the continuous clashes in the Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp, near the city of Saida, in southern Lebanon.
In a statement on its X account, formerly known as Twitter, the Lebanese army said amid the armed clashes in the Ain al-Hilweh, that three shells hit two posts belonging to the army units deployed in the vicinity of the camp, which led to the injury of five soldiers, one of whom is in critical condition, and they were transferred to nearby hospitals for treatment.
"The army command reiterates its warning to the concerned parties in the camp of the consequences of exposing the military posts and their members to danger," the statement underlined, stressing that "the army will take appropriate measures."
بتاريخ ١٠ / ٩ / ٢٠٢٣، وعلى أثر الاشتباكات المسلحة داخل مخيم عين الحلوة ــ صيدا، سقطت ٣ قذائف في مركزَيْن عائدَيْن لوحدات الجيش المنتشرة في محيط المخيم، ما أدى إلى إصابة ٥ عسكريين أحدهم بحالة حرجة، وقد نقلوا إلى المستشفيات المجاورة للمعالجة. ٢/١https://t.co/8nlz6VIApH— الجيش اللبناني (@LebarmyOfficial) September 10, 2023
Earlier, cautious calm prevailed on all the fighting fronts in the Ain al-Hilweh camp, in conjunction with Lebanese and Palestinian efforts to reach a new ceasefire agreement.
The death toll from clashes in the camp rose to five, after three people, including a civilian, were killed on Saturday.
Member of the Palestinian National and Central Councils, Haitham Zaiter, stated that elements from "extremist groups in Ain al-Hilweh refuge camp are not adhering to the ceasefire."
Zaiter also questioned the timing of the Red Cross's decision to set up tents for displaced people from the camp at Saida Municipal Stadium. He affirmed that Palestinian security forces have "no plans to escalate conflicts or conduct an incursion inside the camp."
Hours after its establishment, the municipality of Saida in southern Lebanon removed a camp that had been set up by the Lebanese Red Cross, in cooperation with local authorities, including the aforementioned municipality.
Moreover, Abu Iyad Shaalan, the commander of Fatah's Palestinian National Security in Siada, indicated, as cited by Sputnik, that the Joint Palestinian Action Committee had officially announced a ceasefire within the camp and was directly supervising its enforcement.
However, he expressed doubt about the existence of reliable assurances to uphold the ceasefire from external parties.
Shaalan said there had been previous attempts to establish a ceasefire on multiple occasions, but "terrorist groups did not adhere to any agreements."
Regarding the objectives of these groups, the official pointed out that they seek to control Ain al-Hilweh camp as it represents the capital of the Palestinian diaspora and is the largest camp in Lebanon, ruling out any "political interest" on their part [the groups'] beyond establishing "a terrorist base from which they can launch operations on other Lebanese regions."
On Friday, Hamas Spokesperson Jihad Taha described the recent events in the Ain al-Hilweh camp as attempts to return the area to point zero, indicating that what is taking place is sedition practiced by suspicious parties seeking to fragment and weaken the security of the Palestinian camps.
Taha confirmed that the Hamas movement is carrying out a series of meetings and contacts with all parties in order to stabilize the ceasefire and implement what was agreed upon.
Concurrently, the United Nations resident coordinator in Lebanon, Imran Riza, urged on Friday "armed groups to stop the fighting in the camp" and to "immediately" vacate schools belonging to the UNRWA.
It is noteworthy that Ain al-Helweh is home to more than 54,000 registered refugees and thousands of Palestinians who joined them in recent years from Syria, fleeing war in the neighboring country.
The Lebanese army called on "all relevant parties in the camp to stop the fighting."
Meanwhile, dozens of families fled as the fighting intensified, carrying bags packed with basic necessities, such as bread, water, and medicine.
A public hospital adjacent to the camp transferred all its patients to other facilities because of the imminent danger, according to AFP.