Gunmen opened fire on a Lebanese minister convoy in a mountain village near Beirut, killing two of his guards and injuring another, calling him an assassination attempt.
Saleh al-Gharib, Minister of State "What happened was an armed ambush and a clear attempted murder," al-Gharib said in an interview with Lebanese al-Jadeed television.
Gharib is a member of a party that is allied with Hezbollah and supports the Syrian government, and maintains close ties with the Syrian Druze leader Talal Arslan.
"Despite the bloodshed, we are working to calm the situation," al-Gharib told the Lebanese newspaper Annahar.
The NNA reported that the violence erupted 30 km southeast of Beirut, where supporters of the Lebanese Progressive Socialist Party (PSP) were. A vocal cri A report by the Syrian government had blocked a road to prevent Foreign Minister Jubran Bassil, an ally of the Syrian-Allied Hezbollah movement, from visiting the area.
When Al-Gharib's convoy tried to come by, there was an altercation between the two sides in which three bodyguards and a PSP supporter were injured.
Two of the three bodyguards later died of hospital injuries.
The PSP said in a statement that al-Gharib's guards "accidentally" opened the fire to a group of people blocking the road to prevent Bassil from passing.
It is said that a PSP supporter was injured in the shootout, and others who had weapons had opened the fire on Al-Gharib's convoy and killed two of his guards.
The PSP is headed by Druze leader Walid Jumblatt. Like most Lebanese, the Druze are severely divided over the war in neighboring Syria, with some supporting the government of President Bashar al-Assad and others joining the opposition. Meet on Monday to discuss the incident.
The Lebanese army has sent reinforcements to the area.
The area where the incident occurred near the town of Aley is faithful to the anti-Dama Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, whose Progressive The Socialist Party denied any involvement in the incident.