Deadly clash outside Iran embassy in Beirut


An unarmed Lebanese man has been killed after two groups clashed in southern Beirut following a protest over the roles of Iran and  Hezbollah in Syria.

Al Jazeera correspondent Mohamad Vall, reporting from the Lebanese capital, said the incident happened at about lunchtime near the Iranian embassy in Bir Hassan, which is in an area where support for Shia group Hezbollah is strong.

Five others are said to have been injured in the shooting. It was not clear who started the firing, although pro-Assad Lebanese gunmen were in the vicinity at the time of the killing, a source told the Reuters news agency.

Vall said that a smalll group of young men began to protest but were then attacked by another small group.

Al Jazeera’s Nour Samaha said that the protesters against Iran and Hezbollah belonged to Ahmad Asaad’s party, a Shia politician who is anti-Hezbollah and belongs to the March 14 movement.

The Lebanese army was now reported to be in control of the area around the embassy, with barricades set up on the road.

Vall said the clash was indicative of the rising tensions in Lebanon over the deteriorating situation in Syria, with Hezbollah fighters helping the forces of President Bashar al-Assad. Syrian rebels have fired rockets into Lebanon, while supporters inside the country have clashed with Hezbollah.