BEIRUT — The leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah group has declared victory against Islamic insurgents in the border area between his country and Syria.

Hassan Nasrallah says Friday the next phase of the battle will take on the Islamic State group in the shared border area. Nasrallah’s speech comes days after a joint Syrian-Hezbollah offensive culminated in a negotiated deal. The deal secured the release of Lebanese prisoners and the repatriation of thousands of Syrians, including hundreds of al-Qaida affiliated fighters, back to Syria.

Nasrallah says the battle against IS in the areas between Lebanon and Syria will be launched by the Lebanese army inside Lebanon. His forces will fight in Syria with the Syrian army, he said.

Nasrallah praised Iran’s support for Hezbollah in the fight against the militants.

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