News / Middle East

Bombs Near Iranian Embassy in Lebanon Kill 23

Soldiers, policemen and medical personnel gather at the site of explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
Soldiers, policemen and medical personnel gather at the site of explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
Elizabeth Arrott
Officials in Lebanon say at least 23 people were killed and more than 140 wounded in two bomb blasts Tuesday near the Iranian embassy in Beirut. An Iranian diplomat was among those killed.

It was a scene of devastation in south Beirut when two explosions, one after the other, left victims lying shattered on the ground, and the area in and around the Iranian embassy blackened by the blasts.
 
Lebanese authorities say a suicide bomber and a car bomb were the source of the destruction in the Bir Hassan neighborhood. Lebanon's Health Minister Ali Hassan Khalil called it a terrorist attack.

Iranian embassy, BeirutIranian embassy, Beirut
x
Iranian embassy, Beirut
Iranian embassy, Beirut
An al-Qaida-linked group called the Abdullah Azzam Brigades claimed responsibility for the bombings, and threatened further attacks unless Iran pulled its forces out of Syria.

Tehran is the major regional backer of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a member of the Alawaite sect derived from Shi'ite Islam. Iran also supports Lebanon's political and militant Shi'ite group Hezbollah.  

The area of the bombings is a Hezbollah stronghold, and was hit by several attacks in July and Auust.  
 
Political science professor Karim Makdisi of the American University in Beirut believes Tuesday's explosions and those of recent months are part of the same problem. “There is no way that these car bombs situations are going to be resolved unless or until there is a settlement in Syria,” said Makdisi.
 
Hezbollah has sent fighters to battle alongside Syrian government troops, raising tensions with Lebanese Sunnis, many of whom support Syria's largely Sunni-led opposition.
 
Syria's civil war began as a broad-based civilian protest of the Assad government, but has deteriorated into a largely sectarian conflict, with Sunni jihadist fighters coming from abroad to join, and sometimes lead, rebel groups.
 
Spillover from the conflict has raised fears Lebanon could revert to the sectarian civil war that devastated the country in the 1970's and 80's.
 
Professor Makdisi is hopeful, however, that will not happen. “Everything is a possibility, you know, but Lebanon has been on the brink for the past two, three years because of the Syria war and it has not collapsed yet.”
 
He argued that most of Lebanon's leaders feel there is no point in engaging in sectarian violence, adding he doesn't think anything like that will happen “for the time being.”

  • Soldiers, policemen and medical personnel gather at the site of explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
  • A man carries an injured domestic worker after explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
  • Two men remove a dead body from a burned car, after explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
  • Lebanese army soldiers help an injured man after two explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.
  • A man walks near burning cars at the site of explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov 19, 2013.
  • Two men react in front of burned cars after explosions near the Iranian embassy in Beirut, Nov. 19, 2013.

You May Like

Jihadist Assassin says Goal of Tunisia Murders Was Chaos

Abu Muqatil at-Tunusi’s remarks in a propaganda interview also cast light on attack on Bardo Museum More

Russia Denies License to Tatar-Language TV Station in Crimea

OSCE official says denial shows 'politically selective censorship of free and independent voices in Crimea is continuing' More

Kenyan Startups Tackle Expensive Remittances Through Bitcoin

Some think services could give Western Union a run for its money, though others say it’s still got a long way to go More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
November 20, 2013 10:43 AM
It happens close to Iran and exposes Hezbollah's underground system. I saw a very big gaping ditch in one of the areas the bomb struck thereby understanding that Lebanese, especially Hezbollah operatives, live underground like African rats. No wonder it took Israel plenty of time to dig them out in the last war. But a typhoon, a tornado or a hurricane can surmount the area so that they become underground water tanks. Israel should learn what to do with every inch of the borderline to dig them out or smoke them inside. Underground bunkers in South Lebanon, tunnels in Gaza. These people are serious about preparation for another war.

by: Anonymous
November 19, 2013 4:30 PM
This attack by Al-Qaida against the Iranian interest shows that U.S. and Iran share mutual interest and have a common enemy.
In Response

by: Melisa Han from: USA
November 20, 2013 9:42 AM
Yes... American and Iran have a lot of mutual interests... like the slaughter of all Sunnis... the destruction of Saudi Arabia and all the Gulf Arab States... like the destruction of Israel... the promotion of Shiia Islam in the world... the subjugation of women... the slaughter of all gays... the promotion of the "Supreme Leader" from controlling the filth of iran to the control of the world... yes, I wonder why i didn't see it before... yes, we have a lot in common... go bend over you ugly Iranian

by: Sunny Enwerem from: Nigeria
November 19, 2013 12:44 PM
Karma never loses an address, simply finding its way back to who every played such part ,what Iran is failing to understand is that soon Karma will play out inside Iran after the embassies.

by: sunday superior from: nigeria
November 19, 2013 10:51 AM
The ploriferation of wmd and the incessant terrorism in d world is a pointer dat we should expect the third world war sooner than latter which will usher in the end of the world.........so help us God

by: Samantha from: USA
November 19, 2013 8:20 AM
if you have to be honest - you know that confrontation with Iran is inevitable. They may cut deals with the "UN security council"... the Europeans may look the other way... the US just want to be lied to... but ultimately Iran is going to war... whether with nuclear weapons or without them - is up to US
In Response

by: Ye Kyaw Swa from: Yangon,Burma
November 19, 2013 10:54 AM
Yes,that's right. The war is imminent and inevitable. American democrats are wavering and hesitant only because of their ideology weaknesses.The republicans should lead both America and the entire world.Carter,Clinton,Obama and John Kerry,all are utopian socialists, and they don't really understand what is the real meaning of Peace and War.

by: Hasham Tiqriti from: Lebanon
November 19, 2013 8:02 AM
the smell of petrodollars could be smelled for miles... now, Saudi Arabia has taken the offensive against Iran. Iran has completely undermined the sovereignty of Lebanon... subverted Iraq... in the process of consuming Syria and the Gulf Arab States... and now, Saudi Arabia has had enough - going on the offensive...!!!
In Response

by: Monica from: London
November 19, 2013 3:48 PM
i wish them all the luck. it is about time someone had put a stop the the Iranian malignancy.

by: rob from: texas
November 19, 2013 7:19 AM
Finally Iran gets to see what it is like to be on the receiving end of terrorist attacks. Sorry I won't shed a tear for them.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leadersi
X
Aru Pande
April 01, 2015 9:09 PM
The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leaders

The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Buhari: Nigeria Has ‘Embraced Democracy’

Nigeria woke up to a new president-elect Wednesday, Muhammadu Buhari. But people say democracy is the real winner as the country embarks on its first peaceful handover of power since the end of military rule in 1999. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Abuja.
Video

Video Tiny Camera Sees Inside Blood Vessels

Ahead of any surgical procedure, doctors try to learn as much as possible about the state of the organs they plan to operate on. A new camera developed in the Netherlands can now make that easier - giving surgeons an incredibly detailed look inside blood vessels, all the way to the patient’s heart. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Latin American Groups Seek Fans at Texas Music Festival

Latin American music groups played all over Austin, Texas, during the recent South by Southwest festival, and some made fans out of locals as well as people from around the world who had come to hear music. Such exposure can boost such groups' image back home. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Stockton Community, Police, Work to Improve Relations

Relations are tense between minority communities and police departments around the United States following police shootings that have generated widely-publicized protests. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Stockton, California, where police and community groups are working toward solutions, with backing from Washington.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More