Warring Palestinian factions in Lebanon refugee camp agree to new truce

Smoke rises during clashes between gunmen from Fatah and rival Islamist factions in the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein el-Hilweh, near the southern port city of Sidon, Lebanon, September 10, 2023. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)
Smoke rises during clashes between gunmen from Fatah and rival Islamist factions in the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein el-Hilweh, near the southern port city of Sidon, Lebanon, September 10, 2023. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

Palestinian fighters agree to a new ceasefire on Thursday after more than a week of deadly violence in Lebanon’s largest refugee camp, two Palestinian officials tell AFP.

At least 17 people have been killed and around 100 wounded in the fighting in Ain al-Helweh refugee camp, on the outskirts of the port city of Sidon, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent’s Lebanon branch.

The clashes have pitted fighters of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement, which controls the camp, against hardline Islamists.

“The two parties agreed to implement a ceasefire… starting today at 6 p.m. (1500 GMT),” Palestinian camp official Fuad Othman tells AFP by telephone.

A Palestinian official close to Fatah confirms the agreement, requesting anonymity because they are not allowed to speak to the press.

The agreement came after the speaker of the Lebanese parliament, Nabih Berri, met separately with Fatah’s Azzam al-Ahmad and Hamas’s Mussa Abu Marzuk on Thursday.

Hamas is not involved in the fighting but is in contact with the Islamist hardliners, Othman said.

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