Four killed in Sunni-Alawite clashes in Lebanon's Tripoli

TRIPOLI, Lebanon Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:07am EDT

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TRIPOLI, Lebanon (Reuters) - Four people have been killed in fighting in Lebanon's northern city of Tripoli between Sunni Muslim gunmen who oppose Bashar al-Assad and Alawites loyal to the Syrian president, security and medical sources said on Thursday.

Lebanon is struggling to curb the spillover of violence from the civil war in neighboring Syria, where well over 100,000 people have been killed in the last two and a half years.

The violence, which broke out on Tuesday between fighters in the Sunni district of Bab Tabbaneh and the nearby Alawite enclave of Jebel Mohsen, subsided into sporadic gunfire on Thursday as the army deployed across the city, residents said.

Two of the dead came from Bab Tabbaneh and two from Jebel Mohsen. All were killed by sniper fire, the sources said. Thirty-nine people were also wounded in the clashes.

In August, two car bombs at Sunni mosques in Tripoli killed 42 people and wounded hundreds. Explosions, rocket attacks and kidnappings elsewhere have put Lebanon on edge in recent months and stirred memories of its own 1975-90 civil war.

(Reporting by Nazih Siddiq in Tripoli; Writing by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Alistair Lyon)

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