AFP Photographer Beaten in Clash between Asir Supporters, Passersby

Members of the Internal Security Forces beat an Agence France Presse photographer on Thursday while he covered a clash that erupted during a sit-in organized by Salafist cleric Sheikh Ahmed al-Asir on Sidon’s seaside road.

"When the protesters cut off Sidon's main road, a skirmish broke out between those participating in the sit-in and passers-by," said the photographer, Mahmoud Zayat.

"The security forces intervened in the skirmish," he said.

"I started to take photos, and they kicked me and beat me with their rifle butts. They also confiscated my camera, but I got it back later."

Al-Jadeed television said Asir's supporters “attacked several cars on Sidon's seaside road.”

Following the incident, a security official told AFP "there will be an investigation into this. Those responsible for it will be held accountable."

The sit-in was staged in support of President Michel Suleiman's complaint to Syria over violations of Lebanese territory and to denounce claims from Damascus about alleged shooting into Syria from Lebanon, arms smuggling and infiltrations.

Source: Agence France Presse, Naharnet

Copyright © 2012 All Rights Reserved.