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Lebanon officials, Int'l community condemn Beirut car bombing

English.news.cn   2013-08-16 10:23:13            

BEIJING, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- Lebanese officials, the UN Security Council and Turkey separately expressed anger Thursday toward a car bombing that killed at least 17 people and injured 212 others in Beirut's southern suburb earlier that day.

The booby-trapped car, filled with around 50 kg of explosives, went off in the Bir el Abd area in the heartland of Hezbollah, according to security sources.

A group dubbed the Brigades of Aisha Umm al-Moemeneen claimed responsibility for the bombing in an online video later and threatened to launch further attacks.

Lebanese caretaker Prime Minister Miqati announced Friday to be a national-mourning day.

Prime Minsiter-designate, Tammam Salam, denounced the explosion and called for support for the security forces and the Lebanese Armed Forces.

"Every drop of blood shed on Thursday must be a motivation for joining efforts and supporting security forces and the Lebanese Armed Forces," Salam told Al-Manar television.

Former prime minister Saad Hariri condemned the "terrorist" explosion, urging self-control and restraint to avoid falling into the trap of Lebanon's enemies.

"This abhorrent crime is part of a vicious terrorist scheme that aims to ignite the fire of strife and evil across Lebanon as the country is striving to dissociate itself from the regional turmoil," Hariri said in a statement.

Lebanon's various political parties also expressed their condemnation and concerns over the incident.

Phalange Party called on political factions in the country to be wise in this fragile stage and to prioritize the national interest.

He urged to speed up the formation of a new cabinet to "provide the political cover that would safeguard the country against the successive explosions."

For his part, Progressive Socialist Party leader, also a member of parliament, Walid Jumblat, accused Israel of being behind the Thursday blast.

"I accuse Israel of being behind the explosion in Dahieh," Jumblat told LBCI television shortly after the blast, calling on the state's bodies to consolidate.

Lebanese Forces leader, Samir Geagea, called on concerned authorities to adopt necessary measures to identify the assailants.

"We demand judicial and security forces to take all necessary measures to identify the attackers behind this explosion and try them in courts," Geagea said in a released statement.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry called the deadly attack as a "terrorist act" in a statment, extending condolences to the Lebanese people and urging Lebanese authorities to immediately arrest the perpetrators of the attack and bring them to justice.

Noting the region is going through a sensitive period, Ankara said it believes the Lebanese people will act with restraint and common sense in the face of the attack, adding Turkey will continue its support to Lebanon, according to it.

The UN Security Council issued a statement, saying the council members extended their condolences to the victims and their families and expressed sympathy to those injured in "this heinous act" and to the people and the Lebanese government.

"The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed," it said.

The 15-member UN body reaffirmed the need to combat threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts and stressed the need to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Beirut's local TV footage showed burning cars and plume of black smoke over the blast scene. Media reports said a number of families were still trapped inside the burning buildings in the area.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV said "the remains found 10 meters away from the scene of the deadly blast might be the suicide bomber."

On July 9, a booby-trapped car exploded at a parking lot in Bir al-Abed area in Beirut, leaving 53 people wounded and causing heavy material damage.

In May, two rockets hit Beirut's southern suburb of Shiyyah, wounding four people.

Editor: Yang Yi
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