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Published on Nov 23, 2011
The al-Arabia network reported Tuesday, that Hezbollah's leadership is considering the possibility of taking control of Beirut and effectively carrying out a military coup in Lebanon should the current Syrian regime fall. According to the report, Hezbollah members have expressed concerns over the escalation of the civil uprising in Syria, which could lead to the fall of Bashar Assad's regime. The Syrian president is an ally of the Lebanese Shiite group. Sources close to Hezbollah noted that it was due to those concerns that the Hezbollah leadership was examining various scenarios - including a "broad maneuver on the ground," similar to the takeover of Beirut in May 2008. However, the current plans apparently include a much more extensive maneuver which may expand to a military coup. One of the sources told al-Arabia "As soon as Hezbollah will sense that the collapse of Assad's regime is imminent, armed cells will quickly begin operating to seize control of Beirut's eastern and western parts...this operation, which will be coordinated with Hezbollah's allies, including Michel Aoun's Free Patriotic Movement, will be carried out under the banner of 'protecting the resistance and its weapons inside Lebanon."