A security source said that the Lebanese army and the Hezbollah-affiliated Resistance Brigades were coordinating together in the clashes in the southern city of Sidon.
“Lebanese Army [members] are fighting [alongside] other members of the Resistance Brigades, and are coordinating together,” the source told NOW.
The source also said that army members and members from the Resistance Brigades were seen “greeting each other.”
“Members of the Resistance Brigades were seen from time to time near the Lebanese army’s tanks,” the source added.
The source also accused Hezbollah of being behind the eruption of clashes between Assir’s supporters and the army.
“Hezbollah managed to get the army involved [in clashes against] Assir… in an attempt to kill him,” the source said.
The source also said that 200 militants from the Resistance Brigades arrived to the Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp, and surrounded all its entrances.
“The Lebanese army witnessed this [operation],” the source added.
However, the source also said that the army reopened the entrances of the refugee camp to allow its residents to flee.
The source also said that the Lebanese army and the Hezbollah-affiliated militants were targeting members of the Jund as-Sham organization inside Ain al-Hilweh.
An eyewitness also told NOW that as he was trying to enter the Ain al-Hilweh camp, members of the Resistance Brigades asked him to retreat immediately, “because the Lebanese army will start shelling the area after half an hour.”
The eyewitness also said that “Resistance Brigades members were raiding houses in the Al-Ommal area in Sidon to identify members affiliated with Assir.”
Clashes continued in Sidon on Monday after they erupted early Sunday afternoon when supporters of Assir attacked the Lebanese army reportedly following the LAF’s arrest of the cleric’s bodyguard Fadi Beirouti and his brother-in-law.
The National News Agency reported that the number of casualties suffered by the LAF rose to at least 12 as its troops battled Assir supporters in the vicinity of the Bilal bin Rabah Mosque located in Sidon’s Abra.
In addition to the fatalities, the intense fighting has reportedly left more than 50 LAF soldiers wounded.
The firebrand Sunni cleric rose to prominence for his outspoken opposition to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his calls for disarming Hezbollah.
This article is a translation of the original Arabic.