The bombing shook a city with a reputation for peace, and authorities have linked it to Lebanon’s 1975-1990 civil war. But that doesn’t mean nothing will be done about it. With hundreds still missing, it’s an obvious challenge to be resolved quickly.
Friday’s explosion blew apart a four-story office building in a residential area of West Beirut.
Syrian opposition sources say the blast killed at least five people, and wounded nearly 60. A pro-Syrian newspaper claimed Hezbollah was behind the attack. For one publication, the attack was Hezbollah’s “natural response” to recent attacks on its main bases.
The mood in Lebanon
The bombing triggered a wave of condemnation, with Prime Minister Saad Hariri in Beirut condemning the “act of terrorism.” It created a jarring atmosphere, already fraught with sectarian tensions.
According to Business Insider, Hazem El-Haddad, an analyst based in Brussels, said the bombing was a particularly dangerous development. “You don’t normally expect that much force to go into the prime minister’s office,” he said. “In terms of Lebanon, this is a very serious escalation, because now the Shiite camp will start feeling more vulnerable, because now we will see escalation and counter-escalation that will escalate into a shooting war.”
These were the two men whom authorities identified as the perpetrators.
Mohammad Musa Ali al-Baroudi was on an intelligence watch list.
Unidentified bomber was once imprisoned in Britain and spent six years behind bars
Mohammed Amin Fakharbeh was previously sentenced to 20 years in absentia.