Fallout from Syrian conflict in Lebanon: Timeline

AFP, Monday 4 Aug 2014

Despite officially distancing itself from the war in Syria, Lebanon's existing sectarian and political tensions have been worsened by the conflict in its neighbour.
Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah is fighting alongside Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's troops, while its Lebanese rivals back Sunni-led rebels.
Lebanon is also hosting more than one million Syrian refugees, who have tested its limited resources and the patience of its four million citizens.
Following is a timeline of the fallout in Lebanon:

- 2011 -

- June 17: Fighting erupts in Lebanon's main northern city of Tripoli between Sunni supporters of the rebels and Alawite supporters of the Damascus regime..

- August 8: Lebanon's ex-premier Saad Hariri urges his country to denounce the "massacre" taking place in Syria.

- 2012 -

- August 9: Former information minister Michel Samaha, said to be close to the Damascus regime, is arrested and accused of smuggling explosives into Lebanon for use in attacks.

- August 20-26: Violence flares again in Tripoli, killing 16 people and wounding 118.

- October 19: Lebanese police intelligence chief Wissam al-Hassan, a strong opponent of the Syrian regime, is killed by a car bomb along with seven other people.

- 2013 -

- March 18: Lebanese and US officials say Syrian aircraft strike inside Lebanon for the first time, hitting targets near the Sunni town of Arsal.

- April 30: Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah says the group's fighters have intervened in Syria on the side of the Assad government.

- May 19-26: New sectarian clashes erupt in Tripoli, killing more than 30 people.

- June 5: The Syrian army backed by Hezbollah retakes from rebels the key town of Qusayr, near the Lebanese border.

- June 23-24: Clashes erupt near the southern Lebanese city of Sidon between the army and supporters of radical Sunni Sheikh Ahmad al-Assir, an outspoken backer of the Syrian rebels, killing 18 soldiers.

- August 15: A car bomb in Hezbollah's southern Beirut stronghold kills 27.

- August 23: Twin car bombs against Sunni mosques in Tripoli kill 45 people, the deadliest attack in Lebanon since the end of its civil war in 1990.

- November 19: A double suicide attack targets the Iranian embassy in a Hezbollah stronghold in south Beirut, killing 25 people.

- 2014-

- February 19: Two suicide car bombs target an Iranian cultural centre in Beirut, a Hezbollah stronghold, killing 10 people.

 June 2: The World Bank says the conflict in Syria has cost Lebanon $7.5 billion (5.5 billion euros) between 2011 and mid-2013.

- July 13-14: At least 16 fighters are killed in clashes between rebels and Hezbollah in an undemarcated area of the border between Qalamun in Syria and Arsal.

August 2-4: Sixteen Lebanese soldiers are killed in three days of clashes in the region of Arsal.

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