Turkish soldiers and civilians arrived in Beirut on Friday to join the UN peacekeeping force in south Lebanon, making Turkey the first Muslim country to contribute troops to the mission.
Two military ships docked in Beirut's harbor at 9 a.m. local time. Officials said the ships were carrying some 95 soldiers and civilian engineers, as well as 46 trucks, four armored personnel carriers and several bulldozers and other machinery.
More soldiers were scheduled to arrive later in the day, bringing the number of Turkish soldiers and civilian engineers in Lebanon to 261. The troops were expected to deploy near the southern port city of Tyre to help rebuild bridges and roads damaged in last summer's 34-day war between Hizbullah and Israel.
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