Watch Hezbollah Lose Battle With al-Nusra Front for Crucial Outpost (VIDEO)
After years of robust control in Lebanon, Hezbollah suffered a serious blow Monday after Jabhat al-Nusra fighters managed to briefly take control of a hilltop outpost on the northeastern border with Syria and kill between eight and 10 Hezbollah fighters, Israel’s Channel 2 News reported Tuesday.
Hezbollah said they killed 16 al-Nusra militants, and captured five.
After being rebuffed by Hezbollah forces in the Qualamun mountains last year, the al-Nusra Front is apparently succeeding in dragging the bitter civil war in Syria westward into Lebanon.
In the well-executed operation, the organization’s militants took over the Hezbollah outpost on the hilltop bluffs inside Lebanon, at a key control point overlooking the area.
In the al-Nusra footage, militants are seen storming the outpost under heavy fire. Segments after the battle show what is purported to be captured Hezbollah arms.
“Hezbollah posts in the mountains around Nabi Sbat, east of Baalbek, were attacked by armed groups who came from Qalamun in Syria,” al-Arabiya reported. “Hezbollah returned fire, inflicting heavy losses among the attackers,” sources told AFP.
“All the fighting is taking place inside Syrian territories as militants are seeking to gain a foothold in Qalamoun, where their presence is weak,” Hezbullah sources told Lebanon’s The Daily Star. “They have been launching intermittent attacks.”
Watch a video clip of the action: