Hizbullah emerges from hiding, renews broadcasts

By BEIRUT, LEBANON
August 14, 2006 12:11

 
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Hizbullah's Al-Manar television came out of hiding within hours of a UN-imposed cease-fire, anchoring a live program Monday morning from the rubble of destroyed buildings in Beirut's southern suburbs. A desk was placed amid the wreckage in the morning sunshine, and two anchorwomen -wearing traditional Muslim veils and smiling- broadcast a live program. A transmission truck stood nearby. Al-Manar's headquarters in the southern suburbs of Beirut were leveled in an airstrike in the early days of the monthlong war. The TV station went off the air for just a few minutes but has since been broadcasting constantly ever since, despite repeated airstrikes that knocked down transmission towers across the country. Israeli warplanes attacked an Al-Manar antenna just 15 minutes before the cease-fire took hold on Monday. It was unclear where the TV continued to broadcast from. Al-Manar has been the main mouthpiece for Hizbullah during the conflict, broadcasting Sheik Hassan Nasrallah's recorded speeches after the guerrilla leader went into hiding when the war began. The TV also carried the group's statements about rocket strikes on northern Israel and ground battles with the Israeli soldiers.

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