Wednesday, June 13, 2007

'Escape is impossible'

by Ghaith Abdul-Ahad from The Guardian

I walk towards the area where the clashes between the Lebanese army and the Islamists took place, a sort of a no-man's land between the edge of the camp and the Lebanese army checkpoints. "Tameer" is the Islamists' turf, where most of the men on the streets have long beards and some wear shalwar kameez and black prayer-caps, the signature dress for the Salafi-jihadi Islamists in the region. The area has also become a safe haven not only for jihadis fresh from Iraq but also for wanted criminals such as arms dealers. "Long live the leader Zarqawi," is written on a wall, referring to the al-Qaida commander in Iraq who was killed last year.

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