A wanted militant accused of being behind a series of deadly attacks in Lebanon, including some of the recent car bombings, died on Thursday during a gunfight with soldiers who raided his hideout, the army said.
Sami al-Atrash is believed to have masterminded an attack on an army checkpoint last May that killed three soldiers in the town of Wadi Hamid, on the outskirts of eastern town of Ersal.
Intelligence officials have also accused Atrash of involvement in the preparation of car bombs that were used to target Lebanese towns and neighborhoods, including the July 9 Bir al-Abed explosion in Beirut’s southern suburbs.
Army soldiers captured Atrash along with a number of other suspected Lebanese and Syrian militants in a raid on a house in Ersal.
Atrash suffered gunshot wounds, was transferred to a hospital, and died shortly after, the army statement said.
It added that Atrash had also been responsible for some of the rocket attacks targeting Bekaa Valley towns over the past year.
Atrash is also a relative of Omar al-Atrash, another militant captured by security forces in January where he reportedly admitted to transporting explosive-rigged cars to Beirut.