Car Bomb Blast Near Hizbullah Post in Baalbek Leaves Casualtiesإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Several people were injured at dawn Tuesday in a car bombing that targeted Hizbullah in its stronghold in the eastern district of Baalbek, the state-run National News Agency reported.
NNA said the vehicle was on the road between the towns of Sbouba and Wadi Abu Moussa that lead to Hrabta when a Hizbullah checkpoint opened fire on it.
The driver then detonated an estimated 50 kilograms of explosives, the agency said.
The blast, which occurred about two kilometers away from a Hizbullah center, caused multiple injuries, among them party members and civilians, NNA added.
But Hizbullah's al-Manar TV station denied there were casualties in the blast.
The army said in a terse communique that the explosion of a booby-trapped Grand Cherokee damaged several other vehicles.
It did not mention any casualties and did not reveal how the blast happened.
State Commissioner to the Military Court Judge Saqr Saqr tasked the military police and intelligence, and forensic experts with carrying out an investigation.
According to LBCI TV, the car was heading to the Hizbullah center to target it when it was stopped by the party's members at the checkpoint.
TV footage showed four destroyed vehicles.
NNA said the vehicle used for the bombing was a Kia Sportage stolen from Bourj Hammoud.
Hizbullah drew a tight security dragnet around the site of the blast as residents of the area said they heard the sound of sirens of ambulances heading towards the scene of the explosion.
NNA said that two suspicious vehicles have been previously stopped on the same road where the blast took place.
In recent months, several blasts have targeted Hizbullah strongholds and convoys in Beirut and the eastern Bekaa valley.
On November 19, two suicide attackers targeted the Iranian embassy in Beirut's southern suburbs, killing and injuring scores of people.
Most recently, on Dec. 4, gunmen assassinated a senior Hizbullah commander, Hassan al-Laqqis, in the garage of his building in Hadath.
The attacks are linked to the involvement of Tehran-backed Hizbullah in Syria's civil war.
Hizbullah has deployed thousands of its members to fight alongside troops loyal to President Bashar Assad against rebels seeking to topple him.