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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 February, 2004, 10:13 GMT
Militant 'heir' killed in Lebanon
Teenagers in Hilweh
Ein el-Hilweh camp is a hotbed of extremism
A Palestinian teenager whose father set up a militant group allegedly linked to al-Qaeda has been shot dead in Ein el-Hilweh refugee camp in south Lebanon.

Mohammed Shreidi was the last surviving son of Hisham Shreidi, the founder of the Asbat al-Ansar group.

The 18-year-old reportedly tried - but failed - to lead a breakaway faction of Asbat al-Ansar after the killings of his father and brother.

Turf wars commonly erupt amongst militants in Lebanon's refugee camps.

Asbat al-Ansar and its breakaway faction, Asbat al-Nour, advocate strict Islamic rule; the former group features on Washington's list of "terror" groups linked to al-Qaeda.

Both have clashed with other Islamist groups in the camp and with the mainstream Fatah militia.

Three hand grenade explosions in the Ein el-Hilweh camp on Tuesday were reportedly linked to the long-running power struggle between these groups.

Tense atmosphere

Mohammed Shreidi is said to have antagonised the camp's Fatah fighters, who blamed him for ordering grenade and bomb attacks on their members and property.

His elder brother, Abdullah Shreidi, set up Ansar al-Nour group after their father, Hisham, was assassinated in 1991.

After the elder Shreidi brother died of gunshot wounds in July last year, a cycle of clashes between Islamist and Fatah militants claimed a further seven lives and wounded 24 people.

The atmosphere in the camp is said to be tense on Wednesday, with the sound of machine-gun fire being heard in the early hours of the morning - no casualties have been reported.

Ein el-Hilweh is the largest of the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.

It houses 75,000 refugees and - although guarded from the outside by Lebanon's army - is considered to be a law unto itself within.




SEE ALSO:
Lebanon's no-go Palestinian areas
12 Jul 02  |  Middle East
Violence erupts in Lebanese camp
04 Sep 02  |  Middle East
Four dead in Lebanon fighting
13 Aug 02  |  Middle East
Palestinian refugee camp hit by clashes
13 Aug 02  |  Middle East
Bin Laden: US banned list
25 Sep 01  |  Americas


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