11/15/2011 01:53 pm ET Updated Jan 15, 2012

Lebanon: Politicians Fight Over Syria On Live TV

(AP) -- Two prominent Lebanese politicians debating the unrest in neighboring Syria have exchanged blows on live television, in an indication of the deep divide between Lebanese factions over their relationship with Damascus.

Pro and anti-Syrian regime demonstrations are common in Lebanon, whose politics have long been heavily influenced by Damascus, now facing increasing isolation over its bloody crackdown on protestors.

The fight late Monday night broke out in a debate between anti-Syrian former legislator Mustafa Alloush and the head of the Lebanese branch of Syria's ruling Baath party Fayez Shukur.

According to AFP, the two clashed over Syrian President Bashar Assad's credibility:

"You don't listen. I wish you would listen to what Assad says," said Shukr, to which Alloush responded: "I heard him. I don't believe a word he says."

"Who are you to believe or not believe him?" Shukr said, prompting Alloush to call Assad a "liar."

According to Reuters, Shukur retorted with, "Your boss is a liar!"

The pro-Syrian Shukur then picked up a chair and tried to hit Alloush with it.

"If they had weapons they would have shot each other," a man on the streets of Beirut told Reuters. "And I wish they did."



Below, a timeline of the Assad regime in Syria:

Bashar Assad's Career