With urgent peace talks currently taking place in Tripoli (Northern Lebanon), 500 heavily armed Salafist fighters in and around this city have decided, on Monday, to declare Jihad against "Hezbollah, Shi'ites and their allies".
This according to a very well informed source in Tripoli.
The fighters, who all are armed, are ideologically close to Al Qaeda.
Salafists are spread over Lebanon's north. Mainly in Tripoli city (in an suburb called Abu Samra) and north of Tripoli, in an area called Akkar (very close to Nahr al Bared, the Palestinian refugee camp which saw one year ago heavy fighting between Salafists of Fatah al Islam and the Lebanese army).
To avoid certain bloodshed in Tripoli, THERE IS CURRENTLY A CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT MEETING TAKING PLACE between pro-government and pro-opposition supporters in Tripoli's Serail(government building). Present as well is general Ashraf Rifi, head of Lebanon's Internal Security. The Salafists too have sent their representatives to the meeting. The idea is to create a ceasefire in the city and let a neutral force patrol in tense area's to keep the peace and both sides apart.
Until today, Salafists were strongly opposed to the pro-American, pro-Saudi Lebanese government of PM Siniora. But in the wake of a sudden military offensive throughout the country by Hezbollah (Shi'ite), and its allies Harakat Amal (Shi'ite) and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (fascist, secular), the Salafists have decided to stop fighting the, mainly Sunni, government, and declare jihad on Hezbollah and its allies.
Additional info: As there are hardly any Shi’ites living in Tripoli, Hezbollah here uses its regional allies. These pro-opposition, anti government groups are mainly Sunni, Christian or Alawite.
Opposition forces (so pro-Hezbollah, anti-government) in Tripoli are the following:
The Syrian Social National Party (SSNP);
Al-Tawhid Movement headed by Bilal Shaaban;
The Islamic Action Front headed by Fathi Yakan;
The Arab Baathist Party;
The Arab Democratic Party headed by Ali Eid.
Over the weekend, two offices of Hezbollah and one of the SSNP were burnt in Tripoli city by Hariri supporters.
[This is an exclusive story which might be updated shortly.]