Who is the army fighting in Tripoli?

359538_img650x420_img650x420_crop
The Daily Star

As battles rage in Tripoli, much of the focus seems to be on the fighting itself, the death toll, the army strategy, the bombing raids by helicopter and the weapons seized. But how did all this get started? Who are the players behind the violence and why?

One of the main assailants appears to be Ahmad Salim Mikati. Interestingly he was reportedly arrested previously in connection to possible involvement in a series of bombs targeting fast food restaurants, attempts to send bombs to foreign embassies as well as deadly clashes with the Lebanese army as far back as 1999, well before the fighting began in Syria.

So why was he released after just 6 years in prison and what do his previously involvements tell us about this man and his objectives and support base?

I’m using a new open source fact checking tool called CheckDesk to try to compile what is being reported and what is not being reported in this case. Contribute to the story here. Also check out the other stories on the main page. There are both English and Arabic sections.