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Military


Asbat al-Ansar
The League of Followers
The Partisans' League

Description

Asbat al-Ansar is a Lebanon-based, Sunni extremist group, composed primarily of Palestinians, which is associated with Usama Bin Ladin. The group follows an extremist interpretation of Islam that justifies violence against civilian targets to achieve political ends. Some of those goals include overthrowing the Lebanese Government and thwarting perceived anti-Islamic influences in the country.

Activities

Asbat al-Ansar has carried out several terrorist attacks in Lebanon since it first emerged in the early 1990s. The group carried out assassinations of Lebanese religious leaders and bombed several nightclubs, theaters, and liquor stores in the mid-1990s. The group raised its operational profile in 2000 with two dramatic attacks against Lebanese and international targets. The group was involved in clashes in northern Lebanon in late December 1999 and carried out a rocket-propelled grenade attack on the Russian Embassy in Beirut in January 2000.

Location/Area of Operation

The group's primary base of operations is the 'Ayn al-Hilwah Palestinian refugee camp near Sidon in southern Lebanon.

Strength

The group commands about 300 hundred fighters in Lebanon.

External Aid

Probably receives money through international Sunni extremist networks and Bin Ladin's al-Qaida network.




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