Double blast outside Iranian Embassy in Beirut

Local media reporting at least 25 dead
Posted By Justin Salhani   |   Nov. 19, 2013 at 5:19 AM
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Nov. 19, BEIRUT (UPI) -- Two bombs were detonated outside the Iranian Embassy in Beirut Tuesday killing at least 25 people and wounding more than 150, local media reported.

The Iranian Ambassador was unharmed but the embassy's cultural attache and two Iranian citizens were killed in the twin blasts. Locals on the scene said a suicide bomber on a motorcycle had caused the first explosion, followed by a second suicide bomber driving a car.

Security forces arrived quickly to the scene and set up a perimeter. Glass lay shattered on the ground spread amongst leaves blown from their trees. A few pools of blood rest on the ground where injured or dead had once been.

The Iranian embassy was likely targeted do to its political and military support of Bashar al-Assad in Syria's civil war. In July and August, two bombs hit areas in Beirut's southern suburbs, where pro-Assad political movement Hezbollah enjoys great support.

An Iranian envoy initially blamed Israel for the attack, however a group that calls itself The Abdullah Azzam Brigade later claimed responsibility. Sheikh Sirajuddin Zureiqat wrote on Twitter that the attacks would not stop until Iranian and Hezbollah forces leave Syria and release prisoners in Lebanon.

The Abdullah Azzam Brigade is an al-Qaeda affiliate in Lebanon and has previously taken credit for launching rockets into Israel.

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