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Apr 24, 5:02 AM EDT

Lebanese army arrests 8 wanted militants, including soldier

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BEIRUT (AP) -- The Lebanese army says it arrested eight wanted militants, including a soldier who deserted to join the Islamic State group and four Syrians.

An army statement late Thursday said the arrests came during a raid earlier in the day in the northern town of Akkar. The eight are accused of terrorist attacks in Lebanon and attacks on the military.

Lebanon struggles with the spillover from neighboring Syria's civil war.

Militants have carried out cross-border attacks, kidnapped and killed soldiers. The Lebanese are divided, with some Sunnis supporting the Syrian rebels while some Shiites and Christians side with Syrian President Bashar Assad's government.

At least four Lebanese soldiers have deserted to join militant groups. One of the arrested, Sgt. Abdul-Rahman Khaled, declared on video last year he was joining IS.

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