Lebanese soldiers clash with jihadists near Syria border, 12 reported dead

BEIRUT, LEBANON (BNO NEWS) -- At least three Lebanese soldiers and nine jihadist militants are believed to have been killed in ongoing fighting near Lebanon's northeastern border with Syria, a local newspaper reported on Friday, though official figures have not yet been released.

The fighting began early Friday morning when jihadists attacked an Army post near the village of Ras Baalbek in Syria's northeast, the Lebanese army said in a statement. "The soldiers of the post confronted the terrorist group with different weapons and the clashes are still ongoing," it added.

Lebanese forces also carried out airstrikes against locations where jihadists were hiding out and roads being used to smuggle in weapons.

Lebanon's Daily Star newspaper, citing a security source, said at least three Army soldiers had been killed in the clashes, while a fourth remains missing and seven others are wounded. At least nine militants were killed, the newspaper added. Officials have refused to confirm any casualty figures.

"The Army Headquarters call upon all Media Outlets to refrain from broadcasting any information about the details of the ongoing clashes, especially that some of them are broadcasting inaccurate information about the incident," the army's statement said. "The Media should wait for the statement that will later on be issued by the Army Headquarters."

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