A Deal with The Devil? Hezbollah Now in Talks with ISIS

Daesh asks Hizbollah, Syrian army for withdrawal from Syria-Lebanon border — source

Cease-fire on the Lebanon-Syria border: This morning (Sunday), Hezbollah and the Lebanese army both declared cease-fires in their fight against ISIS.

Before today's ceasefire, the army had squeezed IS into 20 square kilometres out of 120 held by the jihadists in the mountainous region of Jurud Ras Baalbek and Jurud al-Qaa, near the Syrian border.

Red Cross workers and government forces receive buses carrying Syrian rebel fighters and their families following their arrival in Flita on August 14, 2017.

The Central Military Media, an outlet run jointly by Hezbollah and the Syrian army, said the Sunday ceasefire, labelled the Qalamoun ceasefire deal, will pave the way for a comprehensive agreement to end the fighting in the area.

And condemning what he called Nasrallah's "use of the captive troops file to pressure the Lebanese government into holding official and public talks with the Syrian government", Geagea emphasized that "there can not be coordination with a regime that is more brutal than the IS group".

Lebanese army declares ceasefire that comes into affect in a Daesh pocket straddling the Syria-Lebanon border, to decide the fate of nine of its soldiers who were abducted by Daesh in August 2014. He said detained militants revealed the location of the soldiers' remains.

Al-Ikhbariya, a Syrian TV station, said a Hezbollah delegation arrived in Syria to evacuate the bodies of Lebanese soldiers, but there was no official statement on the matter.

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Hezbollah has provided critical military support to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during Syria's six-year-long war.

Ibrahim also added that locating the bodies was part of a deal reached with the Islamic State group during a military offensive in the area that began last week.

A military source said Islamic State militants had "succumbed under fire and asked for negotiations". The fate of nine soldiers that Islamic State took captive then remains unknown.

Coordinating with Hezbollah would be politically sensitive as Lebanon is a United States ally, and the USA has designated Hezbollah a terrorist organization.

Hezbollah and its allies have been pressing the Lebanese state to normalise relations with Damascus, testing Lebanon's official policy of neutrality towards the conflict next door.

A Western diplomat praised the Lebanese army's performance in the border battle in "a risky and complex operation" that the diplomat said would have been "simply unimaginable" a decade ago, reported Reuters on Sunday.

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