Palestinian official: No plans to escalate Ain Al-Hilweh clashes
Member of the Palestinian National and Central Councils Haitham Zaiter expresses doubt about the existence of reliable assurances to uphold the ceasefire from external parties.
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."
Moreover, Abu Iyad Shaalan, the commander of Fatah's Palestinian National Security in Lebanon's Sidon area, indicated, as quoted by Sputnik, that the Joint Palestinian Action Committee had officially announced a ceasefire within the camp and was directly supervising its enforcement.
Shaalan also expressed doubt about the existence of reliable assurances to uphold the ceasefire from external parties.
Elsewhere in his remarks, he added that there had been previous attempts to establish a ceasefire on multiple occasions, but "terrorist groups did not adhere to any agreements."
Death toll increases to five
Regarding the objectives of these groups, he stated 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 beyond establishing "a terrorist base from which they can launch operations on other Lebanese regions."
The Joint Palestinian Action Committee in Lebanon held separate meetings on Saturday with Fatah, Hamas, and the Palestinian National Security Forces, and another meeting with extremist movements regarding the ongoing developments in the camp.
The death toll from clashes in Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp in southern Lebanon rose to five. On Saturday, Al Mayadeen's correspondent reported that two people were killed and 11 others were injured during renewed clashes.
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.
UN urging a stop to fighting
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.
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 directly adjacent to the camp transferred all its patients to other facilities because of the imminent danger, according to AFP.