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  1. Lebanon Main Page
  2. Warring Factions Within Lebanon and Regional Conflicts Make Peace Impossible
  3. Continuing Conflict with Israel Leads to the Formation of Hezbollah
  4. Israeli Attacks and Syrian Meddling Continue
  5. Syrian Occupation Ends, but Syrian Influence Continues
  6. A Failed Israeli Attack Increases Hezbollah's Power
  7. Terrorism Within Lebanon Leads to a Troubled Government
  8. Hezbollah Flexes Its Muscle and Gains a Greater Stake in the Government
  9. Pro-Western Coalition Maintains Its Majority in Parliament
  10. Lebanon Dragged into War in Syria
  11. Prime Minister Mikati Resigns
  12. Civil War in Syria Spills over into Lebanon
Lebanon Dragged into War in Syria

When anti-government protests broke out in Syria in early 2011, prime minister Mikati declared he intended to disassociate from Syria to avoid being drawn into the conflict. The policy was largely effective until May 2012, when battles broke out in Lebanon between pro- and anti-Assad groups. Hezbollah supports President Bashar Assad, while most Sunni groups would like to see him deposed. Tensions increased in August during a sectarian, cross-border kidnapping spree between Shiite and Sunni groups. Then, on October 19, intelligence chief Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan, a foe of Syria who was an ally of slain prime minister Rafik Hariri, was killed in a bombing in Beirut. Hassan was the driving force behind the arrest of former Michel Samaha, Lebanon's former information minister who had close ties to Syria, on charges of orchestrating attacks and assassinations of Sunnis in Lebanon. Many people suspect Samaha was taking orders from Assad, who sought to destabilize the region by fomenting sectarian violence in Lebanon.

Next: Prime Minister Mikati Resigns
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