Syrian man arrested after shooting near US Embassy in Beirut

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US Embassy in Beirut is safe following a shooting incident, Lebanese Army reports.

BEIRUT, Lebanon, June 5: A Syrian man was arrested following a shooting incident near the U.S. Embassy in Beirut on Wednesday, the Lebanese army reported. The embassy confirmed the safety of its personnel.

The incident occurred in the northern suburb of Awkar, where the US Embassy is located. According to a statement from the Lebanese army on X (formerly Twitter), the embassy “was subjected to gunfire by a person holding Syrian nationality.” Army personnel responded to the gunfire, wounding the shooter, who was then arrested and transported to a hospital. The army is currently investigating the incident.

The U.S. Embassy stated that “at 8:34 a.m. local time, small arms fire was reported in the vicinity of the entrance” to the high-security mission. The embassy credited the swift response of the Lebanese army, security forces, and the embassy security team for ensuring the safety of the facility and its staff. “Thanks to the quick reaction,” the embassy stated on X, “our facility and our team are safe.” It added that investigations are ongoing and that they are in close contact with local law enforcement.

This incident follows a similar attack in September of last year when a gunman opened fire at the US Embassy without causing casualties. Lebanese police later identified the shooter as a delivery driver seeking revenge for perceived humiliation by security personnel. That shooting coincided with the anniversary of a deadly car bombing outside the US Embassy annex in Beirut in 1984, an attack attributed to the Iran-backed Hezbollah.

The U.S. Embassy relocated to Awkar after a suicide bombing in April 1983 killed 63 people. During Lebanon’s 1975-1990 civil war, US diplomatic and military missions in the country were frequently targeted, and several Americans were taken hostage by Islamic fundamentalist groups.

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