| 30 November 2023, Thursday |

Lebanon: Hezbollah’s weapons met with widening criticism

Following the incident of Hezbollah’s truck, which overturned Wednesday on a mountain road near Lebanese capital, Beirut, a wave of criticism emerged, denouncing the spread of the party’s weapons and reflecting a widening rift between Hezbollah and its opponents.

The Free Patriotic Movement (FPM), the party’s only ally outside the Shiite community, criticized the spread of illegal weapons.

Hezbollah’s lorry, which was carrying ammunition, overturned in the Christian-dominated area of Kahaleh on Wednesday night. Clashes and tension erupted between the residents and Hezbollah members, leading to the death of two persons.

“What happened in the town of Kahaleh is a warning alarm for the imminent danger of a decomposing state and a convulsing society,” the FPM said in a statement.

Walid al-Ashqar, a member of the FPM political council, told Asharq Al-Awsat: “From the beginning, we said that the weapon is aimed at Israel, but when it is directed inward, we express our reservations about it.”

Meanwhile, the head of the Kataeb party, MP Sami Gemayel denounced the incident, saying: “We are not ready to coexist with an armed militia in Lebanon.”

He continued: “Lebanon is in a dangerous position, and we cannot continue in this way. We are reaching the point of no return, and the problems in all regions are interconnected, and are the result of the presence of weapons outside the framework of the state.”

On Thursday, the Lebanese Army said in a statement that a load of ammunition was seized in a truck belonging to Hezbollah that overturned on Wednesday night on the Beirut-Damascus highway, in a town near Beirut.

The incident sparked tension and a clash between the town’s residents and the party’s members, which resulted in two deaths, the statement added.

“The ammunition load of the truck was transported to a military facility, and an investigation was initiated under the supervision of the relevant judiciary,” according to the statement.

Judicial sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that the Public Prosecution Office and the government commissioner to the Military Court were supervising the preliminary investigations.


  • Asharq Al-Awsat