Beirut- Hours after Saraya ahl al-Sham militants and their families arrived to Qalamoun from Lebanon’s Jurud Arsal area, the Lebanese Army launched on Tuesday sweep operations in the geographical area where the militants were present, ahead of triggering a battle against ISIS in Jurud Baalbek and Qaa, expected soon.
“The Lebanese Army is already inside the area previously controlled by Saraya ahl al-Sham militants and had started a sweeping operation to clean it from cluster bombs and explosives,” a military source told Asharq Al-Awsat on Tuesday.
He said that the army also secured route to the hills from where it can supervise ISIS positions and target any movement by the organization’s militants.
“The announcement of the start of the military operation is now very near,” he said.
According to military sources, the army also installed a military operation room inside its headquarters in Yarzeh to follow up on the field of developments minute by minute.
The source also uncovered the presence of a plan to provide the public with the latest information from inside the battlefield.
He also said a number of US and British experts were still present inside the air military base in the Riyaq area in Lebanon’s Bekaa.
However, the military source denied that those experts were present in Lebanon to participate in the battle. “Their presence is linked to offering some training and information about the weapons they already provided to the army.
They will have no role in the field developments,” the source added.
On Tuesday, Lebanese Army units resumed bombarding ISIS locations in the outskirts of Ras Baalbek and al-Qaa, using intermittent artillery fire.
The army personnel also advanced on Tuesday morning in the areas of Mrah al-Sheikh, Ajram and Wadi Hmayd in the region of Arsal’s outskirts, as part of the army’s ongoing tightening on terrorist groups in the towns of Baalbek and al-Qaa, where they detected a number of explosive belts, bombs shells, booby traps and the body of an unknown person, an army statement said.