LebanonMiddle EastSyria

Lebanon Army declares ceasefire in fight on Daesh


Lebanon’s Army has announced a ceasefire in its operation against the Takfiri terror group of Daesh near the country’s border with Syria to help start negotiations over the fate of captive soldiers.

The ceasefire takes effect at 7:00 a.m. (0400 GMT) on Sunday, a week into the offensive, a statement issued by the military said. A security source said the Lebanese Army began mediated  talks with Daesh at the northeast border.

Lebanon’s Al-Manar television said Hezbollah and the Syrian Army had also announced a ceasefire in their offensive against Daesh on the Syrian side, namely the west Qalamoun mountainous region.

Under the ceasefire, Hezbollah members have entered an area of west Qalamoun to confirm that Lebanese soldiers held by Daesh are buried there, the source said.

The operation began after the Lebanese resistance movement of Hezbollah forced militant concentrations, and Daesh’s al-Qaeda-linked fellow Takfiri outfit of the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham out of the border area last month.

The triumph was followed by departure from the area of another terror outfit named Saraya Ahl al-Sham, a development which left Daesh in a more vulnerable position.

Hezbollah and the Syrian Army then took on the group’s gatherings inside Syria.

A picture taken on August 2, 2017 during a tour guided by the Lebanese resistance movement of Hezbollah shows the flags of the movement (R) and the Syrian national flag flying on a four-wheel drive vehicle, at a position in a mountainous area around the Syrian town of Flita near the border with Lebanon. (Photo by AFP)

Daesh and the other terror outfits broke into Lebanon in 2014, taking over the border town of Arsal. They were ousted from the town, but started taking positions close to Ras Baalbeck, another border town, which has been the focus of the recent counter-terrorism operations.

The Takfiri group currently holds nine Lebanese soldiers.

A ceasefire brokered by the national police and security force of Lebanon — Internal Security Forces Directorate, helped release three Hezbollah fighters from the clutches of Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, which, in return, was offered to take its operatives and their families to Syria in buses.

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