Clashes had erupted between the extremist al-Nusra Front and Islamic State groups on the outskirts of the northeastern border town of Arsal over the past two days, but a military source downplayed their threat on Lebanon, reported the daily al-Mustaqbal on Saturday.
He told the daily that the unrest “is an armed clash over positions in the area.”
They are taking place about 5 kilometers from army stations, he added.
“The army is continuing on fortifying the border and sweeping the area through shelling any movement or gathering of gunmen,” he stressed.
Al-Akhbar newspaper Saturday meanwhile said that the Arsal clashes are an attempt by the IS “to create an emirate that extends from the eastern Bekaa region to the sea.”
Al-Mustaqbal later denied claims that Arsal residents had fled the area to escape the clashes.
Fierce clashes renewed at noon Friday between the al-Nusra Front and the IS on the outskirts Arsal.
The violent fighting left several militants dead and wounded from both sides.
The clashes spread to most areas in Arsal’s outskirts and in Syria’s Qalamoun where al-Nusra and IS have posts.
Media reports said later on Friday that a truce had been reached between the extremist groups.
The militants of al-Nusra and the IS clash with the army occasionally, but a major confrontation erupted in August 2014 when the two groups overran Arsal.