24 August 2012
Last updated at 17:58
Three people, including a Sunni Muslim cleric, have been killed in Lebanon's second city, Tripoli, amid renewed sectarian clashes fuelled by the conflict in Syria.
They died in fighting between members of the small Alawite community of Jabal Muhsin – seen in the background of this picture - and Sunnis in the Qobbeh and Bab al-Tabbana districts – in the foreground.
Friday’s deaths bring to 15 the number of people killed since Monday.
A Lebanese security source said the situation was "alarming and dangerous", adding: "It is very likely that it will escalate this time."
Syria was the dominant foreign power in Lebanon for some 30 years and attitudes to the conflict which erupted there last year colour Lebanese politics beyond Tripoli.
The Lebanese army has deployed hundreds of soldiers backed tanks along Syria Street, which divides Bab al-Tabbana and Jabal Muhsin and has become the frontline, but has so far failed to restore order.
Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati has warned that there were "efforts to drag Lebanon more and more into the conflict in Syria, when what is required is for leaders to co-operate... to protect Lebanon".
Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad is an Alawite, while the country’s majority Sunni community has been at the forefront of the revolt against the state and has borne the brunt of the crackdown.
Correspondents say that the more sectarian the violence becomes in Syria, the harder it is to prevent it from seeping across the border.