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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 3 (1987-2002): Part 19
Title:
SD
Summary: Students Clash With Israeli Troops In Arnoun, Israelis Shell Suspected Hezbollah Targets, Judge Killed In Gun Attack On Court, Beirut Targeted By Israeli Warplanes, Muslim Militants Murder Lebanese Soldier, Russian Embassy Grenade Attack, Israeli Air Force Bomb Hezbollah Offices, Shelling, Troops Withdrawn From Lebanon, Israel Troop Withdrawal Hezbollah Takeover
Story No: X03178
Source: APTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 05/24/2000 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

Lebanon - Students clash with Israeli troops in Arnoun

107734

APTN

Arnoun, Lebanon - 26 February 1999

Protesters behind barbed wire barrier

Various of man pulling down barbed wire barrier

Man running with flag and shouting to crowd

Protesters

Lebanon - Israelis shell suspected Hezbollah targets

111282

APTN

Near Zibqeen, Lebanon - 13 March 1999

Various shelling various of explosions

Two shots shelling near Zibqeen village

Lebanon - Judge killed in gun attack on court

132770

APTN

Sidon, Lebanon - June 8 1999

A presiding judge, prosecutor and three court officials have been killed in a gun attack on a Lebanese court. At least two gunmen sprayed bullets into the court house in the city of Sidon, then dropped their weapons and fled. Police and army troops gave chase but it's still not clear if there were any arrests. There were scenes of hysteria outside the Sidon courthouse following the attack. Passers-by helped carry the victims to taxis and private cars to take them to hospital. Presiding Judge Hassan Othman, a prosecutor and two other judges were killed.

Hysterical people outside the court house in Sidon

People dragging a dead body and putting it in the car ambulance

People coming out of the court house and carrying bodies and injured covered with blood

Courtroom with blood stains, upturned furniture

Member of the Lebanese security forces standing in the courtroom and looking through the window

Lebanon - Beirut targeted by Israeli warplanes

136570

APTN

Jamhour Power Plant, Beirut, Lebanon - 24 June 1999

At least two Israeli civilians and four members of Lebanon's Civil Defence force are believed dead after retaliatory rocket attacks. Initial reports said Israeli warplanes twice attacked a power substation on a hill above Beirut in retaliation for cross-border guerrilla attacks on northern Israel.

Power plant burning

Security forces and ambulances on the streets of Jamhour

SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Najib Mikati, Lebanese Member of Parliament

"The message has been received. We expected such an assault - our normal reaction is that we are more attached to the noble cause of the resistance."

Lebanon - Muslim militants murder Lebanese soldier

170407

APTN

Dinniyah, Lebanon - January 1 2000

Muslim militants have kidnapped and killed a Lebanese soldier following an ambush in northeastern Lebanon. Lebanese troops discovered the soldier's body when they raided a building believed to house a radio station run by the extremist group Jamaa Al-Islamiya. The soldier and his colonel were kidnapped after the militants ambushed an army patrol, killing four soldiers and wounding three others.

Soldiers with heavy arms alighting chopper and running; helicopters hovering above

Lebanese cannons firing; smoke from firing hill town filmed from radio station, tilt down to small building

Lebanese army soldiers inside radio station - checking building audio equipment and ammunition

Lebanon - Russian embassy grenade attack

170500

APTN

Beirut, Lebanon - January 3, 2000

A bold grenade attack on the Russian embassy in Beirut has left one assailant dead - and the rest pursued through the streets in heavy rain. Security officials say a policeman was also killed the attack, which happened on a busy thoroughfare in the Muslim part of Beirut. It remains unclear who the attackers were, but they may have been Muslims angry about the war in Chechnya.

Exterior Russian embassy

Various of Lebanese police firing at assailants

Police taking cover behind APC firing at assailants

Dead body of assailant being taken out of building into ambulance on stretcher

Lebanon - Israeli air force bomb Hezbollah offices

174314

APTN

Tyre - 8 February 2000

Paramedics arriving on scene

Wide of burning building

Wounded man is given fireman's lift to ambulance, ambulance pulls away

Lebanon - Shelling

183758

APTN

Houla village - 22 May 2000

Various of shells landing

Israel - Troops withdrawn from Lebanon

183795

APTN

Various - 23 May 2000

Metullah, Northern Israel (at border with South Lebanon)

Trailer carrying two SLA APCs out of Lebanon across the border

Outside Metullah, Northern Israel (close to border with South Lebanon)

APC driving onto trailer

Troops by APC

Wide of lorries with APCs on back

Lebanon - Israel troop withdrawal Hezbollah takeover

183908

APTN

Israeli/Lebanon Border - May 24, 2000

Hezbollah guerrillas shouting from Lebanese side of border

Various Hezbollah supporters taunting Israelis through border post

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Subjects: Armed forces, Military affairs, Court Proceedings, Legal, Government and Politics, Radio, Violent crime, Ammunition, Defense, Weapons production, Law and order, Armed forces, Embassies, War and Unrest, International relations, Kidnapping, Army, Entertainment, Energy, Crime, Electric Power Utilities, Electricity and Gas Utilities, Military affairs, Army, Media, Homicide, General News, Electric Power Generation, Court Proceedings, Trials, Defense, Guerrilla warfare, Troop withdrawals
Locations: Beirut
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 3 (1987-2002): Part 5
Title:
SD
Summary: Aoun Agrees to Arab Peace Plan, Peace Accord Runs Into Problems
Story No: X03164
Source: WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 10/25/1989 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

Lebanon: Aoun Agrees to Arab Peace Plan

W042306

WTN

Beirut, Lebanon - 22-24 September 1989

Lebanese Christian leader General Michel Aoun on 22 September agreed to an Arab peace plan aimed at ending the six-month conflict between his forces and Syrian

troops in Lebanon. The overall death toll from more than six months of fighting was at least 750 and as many as 3,700 were injured badly to require hospital treatment. Thousands of people returned to Beirut on the 23rd as the ceasefire held, jamming all entrances to the city.

22.9.89 - West Beirut

Cu West German embassy sign pan building:

Bombed out car:

Woman into sandbagged building:

Gvs bombed building:

22.9.89 - Beirut

Aoun announcing acceptance of peace plan:

Lebanese Moslem cabinet director, Selim Hoss, and Arab League envoy Ibrahimi seated together:

SOT of Hoss-Of course, we are very happy that we have achieved this result. We are all keen on the cease-fire being consolidated and the political process being started. We are very hopeful for the future.

23.9.89 - Beirut

Cars coming back into city:

Syrian checking boot of car:

More of cars going in:

Man working at his fruit stall:

Ws of another stall

24.9.89 - Beirut

People at beach:

Pan of swimming:

Concession stand at beach:

Lebanon: Peace Accord Runs Into Problems

W045805

WTN

Beirut and Ba'abda, Lebanon - 24-25 October 1989

National Liberal Party met in Beirut on 25 October to discuss the controversial peace accord approved by the national parliament. among those attending the meting, headed by one christian faction leader Danny Chamoun, was Samir Geagea, the powerful head of the christian militia, also known as the Lebanese forces. Both Geagea and chamoun have reservations about the peace plan, but their organisations agreed to keep their options open. the christian military leader and joint premier of Lebanon, Michel Aoun, has rejected the peace plan because it does not contain a specific timetable for the withdrawal of syrian forces, but he needs the support of the

National Liberal Party to maintain a united christian front.He would then press for a referendum and, with the voters, roll heavily weighted against the Moslem majority,

would hope to throw out the accord.

24.10.89 - BEIRUT.

Burning barricades.

Youths in streets.

Aoun at rally, smiling, raises hands in air.

Crowds at rally.

Dancing in streets.

Ibrahimi in negotiation with Sheik Shameseddin, into car.

Ibrahimi in negotiation with sheik Kabani.

25.10.89 - BA'ABDA.

Aoun addressing supporters.

BEIRUT.

Samir Geagea meeting with members of Lebanese Front.

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Subjects: War and Unrest, Cease fires, General News
Locations: Beirut
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Lebanon Hariri 4
Title:
SD
Summary: Thousands gather for memorial on third anniversary of Hariri's death
Story No: 554299
Source: AP TELEVISION
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 02/14/2008 01:35 PM
People: Saad Hariri, Michel Suleiman, Bashar Assad
Subscription:

SHOTLIST

1. Wide pan of people waving national flags at rally to mark the third anniversary of death of former Lebanese President Rafik Hariri

2. Mid of flags

3. Supporters sitting on a statue

4. Wide of rally

5. Mid of crowd with banner reading "Syrian Killing regime - Enough"

6. Mid of supporters listening

7. Woman holding up banner reading "peace"

8. Helicopter in the air

9. Saad Hariri arriving at the rally to remember his brother

10. Wide of people standing outside a large tent at the rally

13. SOUNDBITE (Arabic), Walid Jumblatt, Head of the Democratic gathering parliamentarian bloc

"Delivering Lebanon to their world, the world of the Iranian-Syrian black evil world will be the moment of retreating the national interest"

14. Wide of security

15. SOUNDBITE (Arabic), Walid Jumblatt, Head of the Democratic gathering parliamentarian bloc

"Look at what happened yesterday. They are snapping each other, they are eating up each other. This is the treacherous regime of Bashar."

16. Various of protesters

17. SOUNDBITE (Arabic), Saad Hariri, The head of the Anti-Syrian parliamentarian majority

"We said it yesterday to our partners and we reiterated it today that we are calling you to meet in the squares and not to confront, to open the roads and not to close it. We are calling upon the election of General Michel Suleiman a president for the republic now and not tomorrow."

18. Wide of protesters

STORYLINE

Thousands of Lebanese took part in a pro-government rally in downtown Beirut on Thursday, on the third anniversary of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's assassination.

Security was tight in the tense capital as Shiite supporters of Hezbollah also prepared for the funeral of a top Hezbollah commander who was slain in a car bomb in Damascus on Tuesday.

The two gatherings showcased Lebanon's divided soul but also increased fears of violence between the rival sides, prompting authorities to deploy thousands of troops and set up blockades on major roads.

Hezbollah urged crowds to its stronghold of south Beirut, to march behind the coffin of Imad Mughniyeh, the group's former security chief.

Meanwhile, majority leader Saad Hariri greeted what he said was a crowd of 1.5 million honouring his father's memory.

Demonstrators beat drums and cheered as leaders addressed their supporters.

One sharp critic of Hezbollah, prominent Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, said the government coalition will not succumb to the opposition's demands which he said aimed at delivering Lebanon "to the Iranian-Syrian black evil world," an echo of US President Bush's "axis of evil" comments.

"Look at what happened yesterday. They are snapping each other, they are eating up each other. This is the treacherous regime of Bashar," he said referring to Syrian president Bashar Assad and accusing the Syrians of killing Mughniyeh.

The head of the Anti-Syrian parliamentarian majority Saad Hariri called for a new President to be elected soon.

" We said it yesterday to our partners and we reiterated it today that we are calling you to meet in the squares and not to confront, to open the roads and not to close it. We are calling upon the election of General Michel Suleiman a president for the republic now and not tomorrow."

The anti-Syrian parliamentary majority had hoped a massive show of popular support on the anniversary would force the Hezbollah-led opposition to compromise in a 15-month political stalemate that has paralyzed the country.

Their rally also meant to send a message to Syria to stay out of Lebanese politics.

Billboards on major highways called for supporters to attend: "Come down, so they don't come back."

Mughniyeh's death from a bomb that blew up his SUV in Damascus could raise tensions between Israel and Hezbollah, as well as with the militants' allies, Syria and Iran.

Hezbollah's chief Hassan Nasrallah vowed to retaliate against Israeli targets abroad after

accusing Israel of killing Mughniyeh in Syria.

Hariri's supporters blame Syria for killing the prominent politician in a massive suicide truck bombing in Beirut three years ago and for a series of bombings and assassinations since.

Syria vehemently denies involvement.

Hariri's assassination ignited mass protests and international pressure that forced Syria to withdraw its army from Lebanon after 29 years of control.

Developments on Thursday could define the course for the next phase in the political confrontation, whether Lebanon slides further into chaos - and possibly a return to the unthinkable, civil war - or takes a step back from the brink.

Authorities deployed some 8,000 troops and policemen to protect the Hariri rally and leading roads, in an effort to prevent a possible clash with Hezbollah supporters.

They were attending Mughniyeh's funeral a few miles (kilometres) away from the pro-government rally.

Armoured carriers took up positions on major intersections, and additional razor wire was brought in to separate the two sides on rain-drenched streets.

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Subjects: Political assassinations, Civil wars, Government and politics, Presidential elections, War and unrest, Assassinations, General news, National elections, Elections
People: Saad Hariri, Michel Suleiman, Bashar Assad
Organisations: Hezbollah
Locations: Beirut, Beyrouth, Lebanon
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 1 (1958-1982): Part 13
Title:
SD
Summary: Lebanon: Situation, Beirut - One Year of Peace
Story No: X03124
Source: WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 12/31/1977 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

1976 News Review - Lebanon: Situation

W018366

WTN

Lebanon and Sudi Arabia - 1976

LEBANON - Beirut

AV With smoke rising

Men with white flag running

Soldiers fire on streets

Civilians withdrawing by sea

Palestinians loading big gun

Attack on Camp Tar al Setar (Palestinian)

MIDDLE EAST/SAUDI ARABIA

Anwar Sadat, Yasser Arafat, at Sixth Arab Arab meeting in Riyadh

Saudi Arabia's King Khalid (pans to) Sadat (pans to Yasser Arafat)

LEBANON

Syrian troops enter Beirut

RR7751A - Lebanon: Beirut - One Year of Peace

W010091

WTN

Beirut, Lebanon - 23 December 1977 and File

It is just over a year since the Arab peace-keeping force, mainly Syrians, took over Beirut and other major cities in Lebanon to bring that country's 19-month civil war to an end. Since then, the Lebanese have been counting the cost and doing what they can to get things back to normal.

Syrian troops at Beirut traffic checkpoint.

Various shots of downtown Beirut devastation.

Market traders, stalls along pavement.

Wrecked Holiday Inn

Dancers and musicians greet first tourist ship (July).

Water-skiing festival.

New City plan unveiled (June).

Pavement cafes.

Tal al Zaatar refugee camp site ruins.

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Locations: Middle East
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 1 (1958-1982): Part 1
Title:
SD
Summary: Eisenhower Orders US Troops To Lebanon, Marines Leave Lebanon, Israeli Troops Move into Lebanon, Israel's 25 Years
Story No: X04035
Source: Universal Archives, WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 04/13/1973 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

Universal Newsreel 1958 - Lebanon: Eisenhower Orders US Troops To Lebanon

W018401

Universal Archives

Lebanon - July 1958

Sound: Commentary / Black and White

U.S. Marines land in Lebanon in response to a plea from the threatened Beirut regime. As Russia reacts with threats and denunciation, President Eisenhower explains America's drastic action to stem Mid-East aggression. A massive redeployment of U.S. forces is carried out, to back up our commitments.

Universal Newsreel 1958 - Lebanon: Marines Leave Lebanon

W018401

Universal Archives

Lebanon - August 1958

Sound: Commentary / Black and White

Almost a month after they were sent in, the first contingent of the U.S. Marines is withdrawn from Lebanon 1,700 of the 15,000 troops now stationed in the tiny, troubled land.

1972 News Review - Israeli Troops Move into Lebanon

W018353

WTN

Lebanon - 1972

Israeli troops moving into Lebanon

Israeli troops firing

CS Machine gunner

Homeless people waiting by road

RR7315 - Israel's 25 Years

W009677

WTN

Lebanon - 13 April 1973 and File

Aftermath of Israeli retaliation raid on guerrilla bases in Lebanon.

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Locations: Israel
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Lebanon Election
Title:
SD
Summary: Polls open for by-elections to fill seats of slain MPs
Story No: 532075
Source: AP TELEVISION
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 08/05/2007 11:18 AM
People: Emile Lahoud
Subscription:

SHOTLIST

Beirut

1. Various of Lebanese army security forces on streets of Beirut

2. Wide exterior of polling station

3. People arriving to polling station

4. People carrying elderly man in chair to polling station

5. Elderly man arriving at polling station

6. People queuing up to cast their vote

7. Man entering voting centre

8. Close up of man's Identification card

9. Various of people casting their ballots

10. SOUNDBITE: (Arabic) Voter, Voxpop:

"I am here to make sure we get back the Sunni (parliamentary) seat left by the late Walid Eido by voting for Mohammed al-Amin Itani. Beirut is ours, we'll get it back and nobody can take that away from us."

11. Lebanese security forces outside polling station

Bekfayya, Mount Lebanon

12. Wide pan of Bekfayya village on Mount Lebanon

13. Wide of traffic on street

14. Lebanese army soldiers on street

15. Supporters outside polling station, security forces in background

16. Sign on Bekfayya Secondary School used as a polling station

17. Various of people voting

18. SOUNDBITE: (Arabic) Voter, Voxpop:

"We are hoping for peace in this country more than anything. We also hope to first have a Christian unity in order to then have national unity later on."

19. Supporters of General Michel Aoun carrying poster

20. Close of poster of Aoun

21. Wide of street in Bekfayya

22. Mid shot of candidate Amin Gemayel's poster

STORYLINE

Lebanon's security forces were on high alert in anticipation of violence ahead of a vote on Sunday to replace two assassinated lawmakers that has deeply divided the nation's Christian community.

Sunday's elections will produce successors for cabinet minister Pierre Gemayel, a Christian shot dead in November, and anti-Syrian lawmaker Walid Eido, who died in a Beirut car bomb in June - both allies of the current government.

The elections could escalate the country's deepening political crisis since Prime Minister Fuad Saniora's government called them without the required approval of President Emile Lahoud, who has blocked attempts to replace the lawmakers.

Lahoud is allied with the Hezbollah-led opposition, as is Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, who has said he will not recognise the results of the contests.

Mohammed al-Amin Itani is expected to easily win the contest for Eido's Beirut seat, since the opposition did not officially sponsor a candidate.

"I am here to make sure we get back the Sunni (parliamentary) seat left by the late Walid Eido by voting for Mohammed al-Amin Itani," said one voter outside a Beirut polling station.

But the vote in the Christian stronghold of Metn for Gemayel's seat is expected to be bitterly contested.

Amin Gemayel, president of Lebanon for much of the 1980s, has decided to compete for his son, Pierre's seat on behalf of the ruling party.

He faces off against Kamil Khoury, who is supported by Christian leader Michel Aoun, a former army commander and prime minister allied with the opposition.

Aoun's party dominated the district in the 2005 legislative elections.

Tension has been high in Metn, and several clashes have been reported between Aoun and Gemayel's supporters over the past week.

The leader of the Maronite Christian church, Cardinal Nasrallah Sfeir, and his bishops attempted to mediate between the various Christian factions to avoid the bruising election fight but ultimately failed.

Voters in the Mount Lebanon village of Bekfayya are hoping the election will bring an end to the division within their community.

"We are hoping for peace in this country more than anything. We also hope to first have a Christian unity in order to then have national unity later on," a voter told AP Television.

Gemayel and his government allies have accused Damascus of being behind the assassination of his son Pierre and a number of other anti-Syrian politicians and public figures over the last two years.

They argue that the assassinations were part of Syria's plan to end the majority rule through attrition - with Eido's death, Saniora's margin in parliament was whittled down to only four seats.

Syria has denied the allegations.

The Shiite Hezbollah party, together with its Christian ally Aoun, is trying to force Saniora to form a national unity government that would give them veto power.

Sunday's vote is the latest episode in Lebanon's worst political crisis since the country's 1975-1990 civil war.

The standoff between Saniora and the opposition threatens to tear the country apart and could lead to the formation of rival governments if parliament fails to elect a new president before the November 23 deadline for Lahoud to step down.

As Maronite Christians, both Gemayel and Aoun are eligible to run for the position, with the latter already having declared his candidacy.

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Subjects: Religion and politics, Parliamentary elections, Government and politics, Political assassinations, Christianity, Armed forces, Army, Legislature, Special elections, Religious issues, Religion, Social affairs, Religious issues, Social issues, Elections, Assassinations, General news, Military and defense
People: Emile Lahoud
Organisations: Hezbollah
Locations: Beirut, Lebanon, Syria, Middle East
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 1 (1958-1982): Part 21
Title:
SD
Summary: The Israeli Invasion (A)
Story No: X03132
Source: WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 06/18/1982 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

RR8225 - Lebanon: The Israeli Invasion

W012628

WTN

Lebanon - 18 June 1982 and File

Israeli troops have now surrounded the Lebanese capital of Beirut. Lebanon, already torn apart by internal warfare, has been decimated, after almost two weeks of fighting. The invasion followed an assassination attempt on the Israeli ambassador in London. But for months the Israelis have been threatening to remove the Palestinian Liberation Organisation from Southern Lebanon once and for all. The push to Beirut, however, was unexpected. Thousands of people have already died and hundreds of thousands are now homeless.

Israeli tanks rolling into Southern Lebanon;

UNIFIL posts wrecked;

Beirut aftermath bombed Sports Stadium;

Argov pics;

London Dorchester Hotel aftermath,

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Locations: Beirut
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 1 (1958-1982): Part 22
Title:
SD
Summary: The Israeli Invasion (B)
Story No: X03133
Source: WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 06/18/1982 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

RR8225 - Lebanon: The Israeli Invasion

W012628

WTN

Lebanon - 18 June 1982 and File

Israeli troops have now surrounded the Lebanese capital of Beirut. Lebanon, already torn apart by internal warfare, has been decimated, after almost two weeks of fighting. The invasion followed an assassination attempt on the Israeli ambassador in London. But for months the Israelis have been threatening to remove the Palestinian Liberation Organisation from Southern Lebanon once and for all. The push to Beirut, however, was unexpected. Thousands of people have already died and hundreds of thousands are now homeless.

UNIFIL troops on parade;

Factional fighting Beirut between Christians and Syrians;

Southern Lebanon Fatah stronghold;

1982 taking of Beufort Castle;

Major Saad Haddad raising flag;

Haddad saying that Lebanon needs a miracle;

Israeli tanks onto Sidon beach;

bombing of Zahrani oil refinery

PLA anti-aircraft guns;

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Subjects: Energy, Petroleum Refining, Petroleum and coal refining, Coal, Oil and Natural Gas
Locations: Beirut
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Lebanon Clipreel Vol. 2 (1982-1987): Part 12
Title:
SD
Summary: The Factions Behind The Fighting (A)
Story No: X03148
Source: WTN
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 02/17/1984 12:00 PM
People:
Subscription:

RR8407A: Lebanon: The Factions Behind the fighting

W015944

WTN

Lebanon - 17 February 1984 and File

The Lebanese government has collapsed, and President Amin Gemayel is under increasing pressure to resign. The Druze and Muslim militias have combined their forces and now control much of the country. This is a look at the cause of this latest Lebanese war. And at the factions behind the fighting.

Beirut, tanks shooting into hillsides:

Evacuation of civilians:

US marines come ashore second time:

May 17 1983 Lebanese-Israeli peace agreement:

Wrecked marine and French headquarters:

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Locations: Lebanon
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Lebanon Christians 2
Title:
SD
Summary: AP pix of Christians rallying in support of former anti-Syrian warlord
Story No: 497470
Source: AP TELEVISION
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Date: 09/24/2006 05:26 PM
People:
Subscription:

SHOTLIST:

1. Wide pan across crowds gathered outside Harissa church waving flags

2.Lebanese telecommunications minister Marwan Hamadeh arriving for ceremony and blowing kiss to crowd

3. Wide of people marching on street

4. Wide of people inside church

5. Former warlord Samir Geagea arriving with his wife

6. Former Lebanese President Amin Jumayel arriving

7. Former Member of Parliament Faris Souayeda arriving at ceremony

8. Tilt down list of Lebanese Forces Martyrs displayed on wall

9. Wide of supporters outside church

10. Various of Samir Geagea at podium

11.SOUNDBITE (Arabic): Samir Geagea, Head of Lebanese forces party:

"Some people (referring to Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah) said nothing can secure us like the National Unity government, we say before the national unity government we need a National Unity and this unity exists in the Taif accord (1989 treaty designed to end Lebanese civil war)."

12. Cutaway of supporters

13. SOUNDBITE (Arabic): Samir Geagea, Head of Lebanese forces party:

"We say that the gamble of holding on to weapons by force is the wrong one."

14. Men in wheelchairs applauding

15. SOUNDBITE (Arabic): Samir Geagea, Head of Lebanese forces party:

" We do not feel the victory because most of the Lebanese do not feel it. We feel that a big disaster took place and made our present and future gone with the wind."

16. Wide of audience

STORYLINE:

Tens of thousands of Lebanese Christians turned out at a tumultuous rally north of Beirut on Sunday led by an anti-Syrian former warlord, in a show of strength two days after a massive gathering by the rival Muslim Shiite Hezbollah.

The rally, which underscored the continued divisions in Lebanon dating back to the 1975-90 civil war, followed an annual mass to commemorate Christian militiamen killed during the bloody sectarian conflict.

Samir Geagea, the former leader of a Christian militia who was only released from prison last year after serving more than a decade on multiple counts of murder dating to the war, backs the Western-leaning government of Prime Minister Fuad Saniora.

Geagea's supporters, waving his pictures, and white, red and green flags of his Lebanese Forces Party, arrived in buses and cars at the shrine of the Virgin Mary in the town of Harissa, 27 kilometres (17 miles) north of Beirut.

Addressing the cheering crowd, Geagea said "Some people (referring to Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah) said nothing can secure us like the National Unity government, we say before the national unity government we need a National Unity and this unity exists in the Taif accord (1989's treaty signed in Taif, Saudi Arabia and designed to end Lebanese civil war)."

Responding to a speech made by Nasrallah at a rally on Friday in Beirut, where the Hezbollah leader had vowed not to disarm despite international pressure, Geagea said," We say that the gamble of holding on to weapons by force is the wrong one."

The UN-brokered cease-fire that ended the war on August 14 calls for Hezbollah to eventually disarm.

On Friday, Nasrallah also called for the formation of a new government, repeatedly attacking Saniora's administration, which he called weak and unable to protect Lebanon from Israel.

Hezbollah's push for a stronger political role could deepen tensions in a country already sharply divided over the war that killed hundreds of Lebanese.

The Hezbollah group's fight with Israel sent their support soaring among Shiites.

But a large sector, particularly among Christians and Sunni Muslims, opposes Hezbollah and resents it for the war which was provoked by the abduction of two Israeli soldiers on July 12.

" We do not feel the victory because most of the Lebanese do not feel it. We feel that a big disaster took place and made our present and future gone with the wind," said Geagea in his speech on Sunday.

The former warlord, a member of the anti-Syrian parliamentary majority, had not attended the annual mass for 12 years because of his imprisonment.

He was arrested in April 1994 and his group was banned, after a church bombing killed 10 people.

He was later acquitted in the bombing but sentenced to three life terms on several other murder counts, including the killing of pro-Syrian Prime Minister Rashid Karami.

Geagea served 11 years in prison before he was released in July 2005, after Lebanon's parliament approved a motion to pardon him.

He led the Lebanese Forces - the country's most powerful Christian militia during the Lebanese civil war.

Israel backed his militia during the war, and during the Israeli invasion in 1982 to expel Palestinian fighters.

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Subjects: Crime, Civil wars, Guerrilla warfare, Homicide, International agreements, Accidents and disasters, Violent crime, War and unrest, Militias, Treaties, Natural disasters, General news, International relations, Government and politics, Treaties, Militant groups, Christianity, War and unrest, Cease fires, Government and politics, Bombings, Civil wars, Crime, International agreements, International relations, General news, Religion, Social affairs
Organisations: Hezbollah
Locations: Harîssa, Mont-Liban, Lebanon
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