DAMASCUS, March 15 (Xinhua) -- Syria said Thursday its army had so far restrained itself from striking rebel positions in Lebanon but warned this could change if its neighbor failed to act.
The foreign ministry said in a statement that, since Tuesday, gunmen in large numbers had infiltrated Syria through Lebanon, adding those infiltrators were receiving logistical support from inside Lebanon.
The ministry urged the Lebanese authorities to control its borders, warning Syria's restraint "won't be forever."
"Syria expects that the Lebanese side will prevent those (rebels) from using the borders as routes" to jeopardize the security of the Syrian people, the ministry said.
Fighting between Syrian troops and infiltrators was ongoing, the ministry said, adding many assailants had either been killed or fled back to Lebanon.
Damascus has long complained about the flow of arms and cash from surrounding countries into Syria.
On March 6, Damascus slammed the Arab League (AL), which invited the Syrian opposition to occupy Syria's AL seat and gave the green light to its member states to provide arms to the opposition, as "violating the principles of international law."
Meanwhile, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Thursday Paris and London would arm the Syrian opposition even if no unanimous agreement was reached in the European Union (EU).
In an interview with local radio France Info, Fabius said the two countries would urge their European partners to speed up lifting the Syrian arms embargo.
The arms embargo is part of a package of EU sanctions on Syria. The EU was scheduled to review the embargo late May.
In response, Syria's state media condemned the European, Turkish and Gulf states for "overtly speaking about sending money and arms to the terrorist groups that carry out kidnapping and killing as well as targeting the infrastructure of Syria."
The armament issue has also raised fears and skepticism among human rights groups and other international powers, such as Russia, which warned "terrorists" would become the final recipients of arms shipments intended for the Syrian opposition.
Amnesty International on Thursday cautioned against arming the rebels, saying they were involved in using child soldiers, sectarian violence and committing war crimes, which included hostage taking, torturing and killing of captured pro-government forces and civilians.
"The dead bodies found every day in towns and villages across Syria bearing marks of execution-style killing and torture are the grim evidence of mounting war crimes and other abuses being committed not just by government forces, but also by armed opposition groups," it said.
The Amnesty report came on the second anniversary of the start of the conflict, which, according to UN estimates, has left 70,000 dead and more than one million displaced.