Salam Chairs Urgent Security Meeting over Bourj al-Barajneh Bombing

Prime Minister Tammam Salam held an urgent security meeting on Friday over the backdrop of the twin bombings that targeted Bourj al-Barajneh south of Beirut a day earlier, the National News Agency said.

Several Ministers attended the meeting including Defense Samir Moqbel, Finance Ali Hassan Khalil, Health Wael Abou Faour, Interior Nouhad al-Mashnouq and Justice Ashraf Rifi in addition to Army Commander Gen. Jean Qahwaji, Higher Defense Council chief Mohammed Khair, Internal Security Forces chief Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Basbous, Lebanese Army Intelligence Chief Brig. Gen. Edmond Fadel, Information Branch chief Brig. Gen. Imad Othman, State Prosecutor Judge Samir Hammoud, and Military Prosecutor Judge Saqr Saqr.

After the meeting Minister Rifi said: “The military public prosecution will take the necessary measures to refer the twin Dahieh bombings to the Judicial Council.”

For his part, Minister al-Mashnouq said: "Political issues will be overcome after the Bourj al-Barajneh attack and this will be evident at the legislative session."

“The security forces are on high alert and cooperation is ongoing between security agencies. We call for a political cover for these forces,” stated Minister Abou Faour.

The security meeting issued a statement afterward saying: “Security measures must be intensified in all Lebanese regions and the highest levels of vigilance must be maintained.

“Terrorism has never ceased planning to inflict harm and trigger strife in Lebanon,” the statement added.

State Commissioner to the Military Court Judge Saqr Saqr visited the site of the blast, he said: “Two suicide bombers were behind the attack and claims of a third one are inaccurate. The bomb weighed 7kgs and the second weighed 2kgs.”

At least 43 people were killed in a twin bombing claimed by the Islamic State group, the bloodiest such attack in years.

The Red Cross said at least 239 people were also wounded, several in critical condition, in the blasts that hit a busy shopping street in the Bourj al-Barajneh neighborhood, a stronghold of Hizbullah party.

The army said the attack was carried out by two suicide bombers, and that the body of a third who failed to detonate his explosive device was found at the scene of the second blast.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the bombing, saying that three suicide bombers were behind the attack.

It identified them as Syrian Khaled al-Khaled and Palestinians Hamed al-Balegh and Ammar Salem al-Rayyes, the Voice of Lebanon radio (100.5) said.



Source: Agence France Presse, Naharnet

Copyright © 2012 All Rights Reserved.