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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 July 2007, 14:37 GMT 15:37 UK
Lebanon troops 'close in at camp'
Lebanese soldiers on top of a damaged building in the camp of Nahr el-Bared
Dozens of civilians are also feared to have been killed in the fighting
Lebanese troops are closing in on the last pockets of Islamist militants in a Palestinian refugee camp, reports say.

Four Lebanese soldiers were killed overnight in clashes at the Nahr al-Bared camp in northern Lebanon.

A total of 107 Lebanese troops have now died in the clashes with the Fatah al-Islam group in the past two months.

Many of the recent victims died in buildings that had been booby-trapped by the militants as they retreated deeper into the camp.

A senior Lebanese military official told the Associated Press news agency that the army was making advances.

"The army is expanding its area of control and is closing in on remaining militants," he said.

Residents flee

At least 70 militants have also died in what has been the worst internal violence in Lebanon since the end of the civil war in 1990.

Map

Much of Nahr al-Bared has been destroyed during the fighting, in which the army has bombarded the camp in an effort to flush out the militants.

Virtually all of the residents of the camp, which was previously home to some 30,000 people, have fled their homes.

Last month the government claimed victory over Fatah al-Islam, a radical splinter group with an ideological link to al-Qaeda.

But clashes have broken out sporadically since then, with an unknown number of militants remaining in the camps.





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