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More Syrian Rockets Hit Lebanon - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Free Syrian Army fighters get prepared ahead of an infiltration operation in Aleppo's neighborhood of Salaheddine. (R)

Free Syrian Army fighters get prepared ahead of an infiltration operation in Aleppo’s neighborhood of Salaheddine. (R)

Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat—Security officials in Lebanon say two Syrian rockets have struck Lebanese territories, causing what they described as “material damage.”

According to local reports, one of the rockets hit a house under construction in the town of Hermel near the border with Syria, while the other fell in a field.

Several Syrian rockets have hit predominantly Shi’ite areas in Lebanon in recent days, killing at least two people.

The latest shelling comes amid heavy fighting on the Syrian side of the border around the strategic town of Qusair.

In a related development, a controversial Lebanese Salafi sheikh has urged his followers to join Syrian rebels fighting troops loyal to President Bashar Al-Assad and Lebanese Shi’ite movement Hezbollah.

The appeal from Sheikh Ahmad Al-Assir came as a second Sunni Lebanese sheikh called the fight against Assad’s regime a “jihadist duty.”

Syria’s opposition and monitoring groups have accused Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran, of sending elite fighters to battle alongside regime troops in Qusayr, an area of Syria’s central Homs province near the Lebanese border.

“Nasrallah and his shabiha [Ba’athist militia] have taken the decision to enter into these areas [Qusayr] in order to massacre the oppressed people there,” Assir told his followers late Monday.

“There is a religious duty on every Muslim who is able to do so … to enter into Syria in order to defend its people, its mosques and religious shrines, especially in Qusayr and Homs,” Assir added.

In other news, a senior Israeli military intelligence official said today that the Assad regime did indeed use chemical weapons last month in his battle against rebel groups. It was the first time that Israel has accused the embattled Syrian leader of using his stockpile of non-conventional weapons.

The assessment could raise pressure on the US and other Western countries to intervene in the Syrian conflict. Britain and France recently announced that they have evidence that Assad’s government had used chemical weapons. Although the US says it has not been able to verify these claims, President Barack Obama has warned that the introduction of chemical weapons by Assad would be a “game changer.”