BEIRUT, Aug. 24 (Xinhua) -- Tripoli, a city in northern Lebanon, was in shock and grief.
On Saturday, streets were almost empty and shops were closed, a day after twin explosions that left 45 killed and more than 350 injured.
Residents wandered around the attacked sites, searching for their relatives; shopkeepers were checking their wrecked stores; and Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) were still clearing the charred remains of the attack.
Soldiers, on foot or in armored vehicles, patrolled the vicinity of the explosion sites, stopping motorists and inspecting "suspicious" cars.
Mustapha Al Khaled, who lives next to al-Taqwa mosque where the first booby-trapped car exploded, told Xinhua, "All my neighbors were injured in the explosion, and the daughter of one my neighbors was killed. It is a terrifying scene that I cannot describe. It is a terrible crime..."
"I came back home today to check on my home seriously damaged by the explosion, thinking what I would do if I were with my family at home at the time of the explosion," said the man.
Saeed Al Hourani, another resident, told Xinhua that "I was injured, along with my son, as we were driving by the explosion scene next to Al Salam mosque, heading to our house. Thankfully, my injuries were minor."
"I am returning now to check on my neighbors and friends, but I will return to the hospital to stay with my nine-year-old child who was seriously injured," added Al Hourani.
On Saturday, intermittent gunfire in Bab al-Tebbaneh Sunni neighborhood and surrounding area pierced through the calm of the city.
According to local media, gunmen set up checkpoints across the city, and began to inspect IDs of passers-by and vehicles.
Over the past two years, Tripoli witnessed frequent violence, including waves of deadly clashes between two rival neighborhoods of Sunni Bab al-Tebbaneh and Alawite Jabal Mohsen.
The conflict in Tripoli is related to the ongoing Syrian crisis, as the Sunnis in the Lebanese city support the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar Assad, while the Alawites stand by Assad who is also Alawite.