Lebanon sees rampant arms trade in areas near Syria border

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-11-13 10:23:49

The trade of arms has been flourishing in most of the Lebanese regions, particularly in the areas adjacent to the Syrian border, under the pretext of self- defense due to the unstable security situation in the country.

This fact has been seen as a normal repercussion of the volatile situation in Syria that has been engulfed in a civil war since three years.

Lebanon and Syria enjoy a 330 kilometers long border line, where illegal passages spread in various regions and are used to traffic weapons in both directions. But the Syrian crisis has contributed to the political division among the Lebanese parties, and various regions of the country witnessed armed clashes on a sectarian background.

According to sources involved in the arms trade, this business "has turned to be a main and very important source of living for many families particularly in these difficult times."

Abou Ahmad Ali Al Ghoraiz, a well-known arms dealer, told Xinhua "the demand on individual weapons has surpassed the supply. "

Al Ghoraiz, who is a veteran in arms trade, inherited the business from his father and said that the "past three years have been the most flourishing in this illegal trade," adding "this business is a gold mine."

"The prices of all kinds of weapons and ammunition rose more than four times, while customers and traders also nearly doubled in figures. The prices rose 90 percent during the past 10 months and our profits rose also by 60 percent."

For his part, Lebanese citizen Hassan Al Daher told Xinhua that "weapons are available everywhere and there are no restrictions on getting them."

He added that "the security situation in Lebanon is unstable and who knows what is going to happen tomorrow?"

Al Daher insisted that "we deprive our children from some luxuries to buy some ammunition, as one Kalashnikov bullet costs today 1 dollars."

But Salem Salloum, an arms middleman thinks that "the arms trade that was carried out previously in the dark is done today in the light and its path is upwards."

He told Xinhua that the arms available in the market are Russian and US-made and that prices vary according to its availability.

Many observers said that the arms trafficking to the local market rose by 45 percent comparing to last year.

Posted in: Mid-East

blog comments powered by Disqus