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Five dead in clashes at Palestinian camp in Lebanon

Two days of fighting in Ain al-Hilweh also leave 50 dead
Smoke rises from violence in Ain al-Hilweh (AFP)

The toll in two days of clashes in the Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon rose to five on Sunday, medics said, as local factions worked to implement a security plan.

Clashes erupted in the camp late Friday as Palestinian factions participating in a joint security force began deploying throughout the area in the southern city of Sidon.

They came under fire from a local Islamic militant group in part of the camp, prompting clashes that Lebanese and Palestinian medics said Sunday have now killed five people and wounded at least 30, mostly civilians.

The dead were two civilians, two members of the joint Palestinian security force and one member of the militant group, the medical sources said.

The fighting has prompted security measures outside the camp, which Lebanese security forces do not enter by long-standing agreement.

An adjacent highway has been cut and patients moved from the Sidon government hospital next to the camp.

House riddle with bullets in camp near Sidon, Lebanon (Reuters)

Palestinian officials in the camp called Sunday on remaining members of a group led by a local militant to surrender with their weapons.

Around noon, the intensity of the clashes decreased after earlier fighting that sent clouds of black smoke up from the camp.

Ain al-Hilweh is home to several armed factions and has been plagued by intermittent clashes between them as well as against smaller militant groups.

Lebanon's army does not enter Palestinian refugee camps, where security is managed by joint committees of Palestinian factions.

Ain al-Hilweh is home to some 61,000 Palestinians, including 6,000 who have fled the war in Syria.