Hezbollah ousts Nusra Front from e. Lebanon post, Nusra captures one fighter

Published October 9th, 2014 - 01:20 GMT

Hezbollah said Thursday that it rooted out Nusra Front militants from strategic posts overlooking Brital’s outskirts on the eastern border, as the Syria-based jihadist group posted a video allegedly showing a Hezbollah fighter it claims to have captured during Sunday’s assault on the party’s post in the area.

Hezbollah fighters seized the strategic Umm Khorj outpost in Lebanon’s eastern mountain range from which Nusra Front said it had launched an attack on the party’s Ain Saa position in Brital’s outskirts Sunday, Hezbollah’s Al-Ahed website quoted party sources as saying.

“The jihadist fighters of the resistance [Hezbollah] captured the post, which stands at 2,300 meters above sea level and constitutes a strategic hill that overlooks the mountains of Assal al-Ward, Al-Khashaat and Al-Jibbeh in Qalamoun,” the sources said.

They claimed that the militants sustained heavy losses in their ranks, including 15 dead and over 50 wounded, in addition to the destruction of eight vehicles. There was no word on Hezbollah casualties.

By gaining control of Umm Khorj post, Hezbollah tightened its grip on the area that was being used as a launch pad for militant attacks on Lebanon, the sources added.

Meanwhile, Nusra Front tweeted a video of a captive Hezbollah fighter identified as Imad Ayyad, who it said was captured during clashes in Brital’s outskirts.

The 23-year-old captive said he served in a 200-man-strong unit tasked with guarding the party’s artillery and rocket-firing positions in the area.

Nusra Front attacked Hezbollah’s positions in Brital’s outskirts last Sunday in what it said was a pre-emptive move, accusing the Lebanese party of preparing an assault on militant positions in Qalamoun.

Eight Hezbollah fighters were killed in the attack, the highest toll suffered by the party inside Lebanon in a single incident since it started fighting alongside the Syrian Army against the rebels more than a year and a half ago.

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