(AP) SIDON, Lebanon – Lebanese troops fired at militant Hezbollah forces in southern Lebanon Sunday in the first such clash in more than a decade, killing one guerrilla and wounding two, a Hezbollah official said.
Lebanese security officials confirmed the clash in the southern village of Jbaa, some 20 kilometers (8 miles) southeast of the port city of Sidon, but refused to give further details.
The incident began when members of rival Shiite Muslim groups Hezbollah and Amal clashed over hanging political posters in the village mosque, the Hezbollah official said on condition of anonymity.
The rivals beat each other with sticks, prompting Lebanese army troops in the area to open fire and kill Hezbollah member Ahmed Ghamloush and wound two of his comrades, the Hezbollah official said.
Lebanese forces quickly cordoned off the area where the clashes occurred. It was unclear if Hezbollah forces fired any bullets.
The clash was the first between Hezbollah and Lebanese army forces in southern Lebanon since 1991, when Lebanese troops entered the region for the first time since the end of the 1975-90 civil war.
The pro-Iranian Hezbollah and pro-Syrian Amal have previously fought pitched gunbattles in Beirut’s predominantly Shiite southern suburbs and southern Lebanon for control over Lebanon’s 1.2 million-strong Shiite Muslim community.
A power struggle from 1987 to 1990 killed more than 1,000 people.