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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 September 2007, 10:20 GMT 11:20 UK
Lebanon army 'killed 222 rebels'
Nahr al-Bared camp
Troops spread out through the camp to mop up any militant resistance
Lebanese troops killed at least 222 Islamist militants in three months of fighting at a refugee camp in northern Lebanon, the defence minister says.

Elias Murr said 202 militants from the Fatah al-Islam group were captured since fighting erupted in May.

A number have been charged with murder and terrorist offences.

The Lebanese army finally took control of Nahr al-Bared camp on Sunday. At least 160 soldiers died in Lebanon's worst internal violence since 1990.

At least 42 civilians were also killed in the fierce fighting, bringing the death toll to more than 400.

Mr Murr added that "an undetermined number" of Fatah al-Islam members were buried in mass graves in the camp by their comrades.

"This victory allowed us to put an end to the worst threat ever faced by the Lebanese," he said.

"Fatah al-Islam could have spread throughout the country like cancerous cells."

On Monday, there was a brief eruption of gunfire and explosions near the eastern edge of Nahr al-Bared as army units patrolled through the camp in search for remnants of Fatah al-Islam.




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