Syrian Opposition and rebel groups on Monday accused the Shiite Hezbollah movement in neighboring Lebanon of attacking three Syrian border villages in support of the Syrian government.
According to the Opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) and Syrian Revolution General Commission (SRGC), Hezbollah fighters attacked three villages in the Qusayr region of Homs after crossing the border into Syria on Saturday.
The two groups said the attack was launched by Hezbollah fighters moving on foot. They said the Free Syrian Army [FSA], an armed rebel group consisting mainly of Army deserters, repelled Hezbollah's "unprecedented invasion" by using two tanks captured earlier from the Syrian Army.
Meanwhile, an unnamed Hezbollah spokesman was quoted as saying by the Lebanese media that three Lebanese Shiites were killed in the clashes with the Syrian rebels. But he refused to confirm whether they were Hezbollah members.
Syrian rebels have accused Hezbollah's military wing in the past of sending its fighters to Syria to fight on behalf of the Syrian regime headed by President Bashar al-Assad. Hezbollah, which is one of the biggest groups in Lebanon's governing coalition, rejects those claims.
Nevertheless, the United States imposed new sanctions on the Lebanese militant group in August for aiding the Syrian President and his regime. Incidentally, Hezbollah is designated as a terrorist group by the United States.
Syria has been witnessing fierce fighting between government forces and armed rebels opposed to the Assad regime since March 2011. An estimated 60,000 people have been killed and millions displaced since the armed rebellion began.
The conflict has forced some 750,000 Syrians to seek refuge in neighboring countries, with millions more displaced internally. International efforts at finding a solution to the crisis have been hampered by a deep divide in the U.N. Security Council.
by RTT Staff Writer
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