Fire libanesiske soldater ble drept da bilen deres ble truffet av en RPG-granat. Angrepet kom etter at hæren hadde drept en narkobaron og hans medhjelper. Hasjdyrking er blitt storbusiness i Bekaa etter at sentralregjeringen ble paralysert for 18 måneder siden.

Området er både hasj- og Hizbollah-land. Hizbollah tok avstand fra drapene.

Four Lebanese Army soldiers were killed in the hashish-growing hinterlands of eastern Lebanon Monday when armed men fired a rocket-propelled grenade at their vehicle, in an apparent escalation of the army’s recent battles with drug dealers and criminals in that part of the country.

The attack took place in the village of Tamneen in the Bekaa Valley, a poor agricultural area near the Syrian border where hashish has been cultivated for decades. A spate of car-jackings and other crimes in the area, long neglected by the authorities, has led the Army to take tougher measures.

The attack was widely believed to be revenge for an incident late last month in which Lebanese troops killed a well-known drug baron, Ali Abbas Jaafar, and one of his aides, after they escaped a checkpoint in a stolen car. Relatives of the two men later fired on soldiers in the area, and the members of the Jaafar clan were said to be planning retaliation.

Lebanese Soldiers Killed in Ambush