A new ceasefire came into effect Thursday evening in the Palestinian refugee camp of Aïn el-Heloué, in southern Lebanon, where 17 people were killed and around 100 injured in a week of clashes.
The fighting pits Fatah, the main Palestinian organization, against small Islamist groups in this camp, the largest in Lebanon. Several previous ceasefire agreements have not been respected.
“The two parties have agreed to respect a ceasefire from 6 p.m. (3 p.m. GMT),” Fouad Othman, a camp official, told AFP.
After the entry into force of this new ceasefire, the weapons fell silent on Thursday, reported the AFP correspondent on site.
It was proclaimed after separate talks between Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri and senior officials from Fatah and its Islamist rival, dispatched to Lebanon to try to calm the situation.
Hamas does not take part in the fighting but uses its influence with Islamist groups, said Mr. Othman.
Since the fighting began on September 7, 17 people have been killed and around 100 injured, according to a Palestinian Red Crescent official in Lebanon, Imad Hallak. Five Fatah fighters were buried Thursday, according to an AFP correspondent.
Hundreds of families have fled the camp since the fighting began, the United Nations Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) said.
The commander-in-chief of the Lebanese army, General Joseph Aoun, visited the site on Thursday to inspect the army brigade deployed around the camp.
Under a long-standing agreement, the Lebanese army does not deploy to Palestinian camps where security is provided by Palestinian factions.
Aïn el-Heloué is the largest of the 12 Palestinian camps in Lebanon that were established after the arrival of refugees forced into exodus during the First Arab-Israeli War, sparked by the creation of the State of Israel in 1948.
Some 54,000 refugees are crowded there, including radical Islamists and people wanted by the courts.
At the end of July and beginning of August, 13 people died during similar clashes over five days.
Mr. Abbas's Palestinian Authority is based in the occupied West Bank, while Hamas controls the Gaza Strip.
14/09/2023 21:00:14 - Saida (Lebanon) (AFP) - © 2023 AFP