first_imgLebanese television stations reported that among the dead militants were men from Bangladesh, Yemen and other Arab countries, although the reports could not be confirmed. Security officials said some of the men wore explosive belts used by suicide bombers. Around the outskirts of the camp, called Nahr el Bared, the scene was reminiscent of Lebanon’s civil war in the 1980s, with tanks and heavy armor rumbling past, occasionally opening fire at buildings in the camp, while snipers on rooftops fired at anything that moved inside. Terrified drivers on the main road north of the city scrambled across trying to avoid being hit in the crossfire as army checkpoints inspected cars in search of militants seeking to escape the camp. Troops were ordered to shell any building that returned fire, one official said, while members of Fatah Islam threatened to take the fight across the country. At one point, the battle appeared to be moving out of the camp as several of the militants tried to come on to the main road, only to face a hail of machine gun fire. “Their goal is to destroy this country,” said Ahmad Marouk, who stood outside the entrance to the camp early Monday watching the fighting. “The army is unprepared for this, and their bases are not prepared.” Three soldiers were killed and several others were wounded in an attack on an army post outside Nahr el Bared late Monday night. The civilian death count was expected to grow because rescue workers had not been able to venture deep into the camp and take a detailed survey of the victims. During a two-hour cease-fire on Monday afternoon, the Red Cross was allowed to evacuate 16 injured people from the camp, a spokesman for the aid agency said. But the fighting quickly resumed when the militants broke the cease-fire, Lebanon’s official news agency reported. Among those killed in the battles on Sunday was a fugitive suspect in a failed train bombing in Germany last year, authorities and family members said. Saddam al Hajdib, who had escaped Germany with his brother, Youssef, after planning what the German authorities last summer said was the gravest terrorist threat in the country since the hijackings of Sept. 11, 2001, were plotted in Hamburg, died with his brother Amer when security forces descended on the building where they were hiding. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! TRIPOLI, Lebanon – Lebanese tanks and artillery pounded a Palestinian refugee camp in this northern Lebanese city for the second straight day on Monday, with the goal of trapping members of a radical Islamist group. The attack raised concerns for thousands trapped inside. Government officials said at least 60 people had been killed – 30 soldiers, 15 militants and 15 civilians – in the fighting that began when a police raid on bank robbers early Sunday escalated into one of Lebanon’s most significant security crises since the end of the civil war. The militant group, Fatah Islam, which is thought to have links to al-Qaida, fired anti-aircraft guns and mortars and had night vision goggles and other sophisticated equipment. The Lebanese army does not have such gear. last_img