The Lebanese capital, Beirut, already divided by sectarian violence, is experiencing more trouble.
GV & CU Machineguns mounted on jeeps among ruins in Beirut city centre. (3 SHOTS)
GV PAN OVER Destroyed buildings.
TV Militia looking at ruined bridge and walking through ruins. (3 SHOTS)
LV PAN Militia patrolling in jeep.
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Background: The Lebanese capital, Beirut, already divided by sectarian violence, is experiencing more trouble. Leftist militiamen have set up reinforcements along the so-called confrontation line between East and West Beirut.
SYNOPSIS: The leader of the Lebanese Leftist Independent Nasserite Movement, Ibrahim Koleilat, said the measure had been necessitated by what he called plans to set up a racist, separate state in all areas of Beirut dominated by right-wing Christian groups. He said such a situation would serve the plans of those who wanted to partition Lebanon. The militiamen are said to have been equipped with sophisticated long-range weapons.
Beirut is a capital without a country because for practical purposes, Lebanon has disintegrated as a unitary state. Municipal authority in Beirut has been ceded to the rival Christian and Moslem militias just as central government control throughout the country has fallen into the hands of power groups backed by such influential neighbours as Israel and Syria. Western diplomats say Lebanon is the fuse to the Middle East powder keg. Beirut they say is the match that could well light the fuse.