Some of us are afraid that this may (will) happen.
Lebanon’s government is framing its fight against Islamist extremists based in a Palestinian refugee camp in north Lebanon as an existential fight between freedom and terrorism.
Economy Minister Sami Haddad told CNN on Monday night his army was battling “international terrorists” from the Sunni militant group Fatah al-Islam and that there was no friction between Sunnis and Shias in Lebanon.
But with the army continuing to fire heavy artillery into Nahr al-Bared camp, a square-kilometre slum housing over 40,000 Sunni Palestinian refugees, analysts are warning not of intra-Lebanese strife, but the prospect of the growing civilian casualties sparking a wider uprising across Lebanon’s 12 Palestinian refugee camps and beyond.
“If this situation continues and the army continue to shell civilian areas in the camp, then we could see a domino effect across all of Lebanon’s refugee camps and we could start a war between the Palestinians and the Lebanese,” Amal Saad-Ghorayeb, visiting scholar at the Carnegie Middle East Centre in Beirut, told IRIN.