Sporadic exchanges of fire erupted yesterday Tuesday in the largest Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon, despite the announcement the previous day that a ceasefire had been agreed after several days of bloody clashes, an AFP correspondent reported.

Since September 7, fighting has been raging between Islamist groups and Fatah fighters in Ain al-Khelwa, Lebanon’s largest Palestinian refugee camp, next to the city of Saida (south).

The hostilities have left at least “seven dead” and “over 80 wounded”, including civilians, the Palestinian Red Crescent’s communications director in Lebanon, Imad Halak, told AFP on Tuesday.

An “immediate and permanent” ceasefire was announced last night Monday during a meeting between Palestinian security officials and the Lebanese security director.

However, gusts were heard yesterday afternoon, an AFP correspondent said, before a “relative calm” prevailed in the evening, according to ANI (Agence nationale d’information), Lebanon’s official news agency.

In a statement, Fatah, the faction of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, assured that its members are respecting the ceasefire, but they had to “prevent an attack” by Islamists yesterday.

Fatah sent its top official, Azem al-Ahmad, to Lebanon to de-escalate the tension.

The second-in-command of the Islamist movement Hamas – who was not involved in the fighting – Musa Abu Marzouk also arrived in Beirut for talks with Lebanese officials to check “the situation in the camp”, according to ANI.

At least thirteen other people were killed in similar multi-day clashes in late July and early August.

Ain al-Khelwa is the largest of twelve Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon. It was erected after the mass exodus of refugees during the first Arab-Israeli war, when the state of Israel was being established in 1948.

There, 54,000 people live in suffocating conditions, among them Islamic fanatics and wanted persons.

Under an agreement reached decades ago, neither the Lebanese army nor security forces are deployed inside the Palestinian refugee camp. Security is guaranteed by Palestinian factions.