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Lebanese army hits Daesh targets

In this June 19, 2016 photo, Lebanese army soldiers work on a 130mm howitzer cannon, pointed at areas controlled by Daesh militants near Arsal, in northeast Lebanon. Lebanon's US-backed military is gearing up for a long awaited assault to dislodge hundreds of Daesh militants from a remote corner of northeastern Lebanon near the border with Syria, seeking to end a years-long threat posed to neighboring towns and villages by the extremists. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

BEIRUT: The Lebanese army targeted Daesh positions on the outskirts of Ras Baalbek and Al-Qaa in northeast Lebanon on Thursday with heavy artillery, rocket launchers and helicopters.
“Direct targets among terrorists were hit,” the Army Command said.
Hezbollah has called for coordination between themselves, the Lebanese army and the Syrian army to expel Daesh from the area. The suggestion was rejected by Lebanon’s Supreme Defense Council.
“Lebanon is committed to the international coalition to fight terrorism and considers the Lebanese army the sole force capable of undertaking confrontations,” it said.
Meanwhile, the Syrian ambassador to Lebanon has intervened in the controversy over invitations from the Syrian regime to Lebanese MPs to attend this month’s Damascus International Fair, an event to promote the reconstruction of Syria.
The invitations have exposed rifts in Lebanon’s new “national unity” government. Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri has banned ministers from official visits to Syria, but some will defy the ban and go to Damascus anyway. Agriculture Minister Ghazi Zaiter, Industry Minister Hussein Hajj Hassan and Economy Minister Raed Khoury are all expected to attend the event.
Syrian Ambassador Ali Abdul Karim told the pro-Hezbollah Al-Ahd website: “There are agreements between Lebanon and Syria; there are embassies, and ongoing coordination despite the irresponsible and illogical statements that were recently made.
“Relations between Lebanon and Syria are still on, and it is in the interests of both countries for this coordination to be more effective.
“Syria, with its achievements, victories and counterterrorism, has done a great favor for Lebanon and the region.”

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