Skip to main content

Report: Explosion kills four in Hezbollah stronghold in Beirut, Lebanon

By Saad Abedine and Ben Brumfield, CNN
January 21, 2014 -- Updated 1227 GMT (2027 HKT)
Cars burn after an explosion in Haret Hreik in southern Beirut on Tuesday.
Cars burn after an explosion in Haret Hreik in southern Beirut on Tuesday.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • 27 people also injured when a suicide bomber detonated a car bomb
  • The Haret Hreik neighborhood is part of Hezbollah's "security square"
  • The United States considers Hezbollah a terrorist organization
  • Sunni Islamist terrorists claimed responsibility for a similar attack weeks ago

(CNN) -- A suicide car bomber killed four people and injured 27 others in a neighborhood in southern Beirut on Tuesday, Lebanon's state-run National News Agency reported.

Black plumes of smoke rose from Haret Hreik, which is known as a Hezbollah stronghold. Ambulances rushed to the scene, NNA reported.

The neighborhood is part of Hezbollah's high-security area known as "security square," and many of the Shiite Islamist group's leaders live there.

Troops have formed a security perimeter around the area and deployed investigators to the blast site, the Lebanese army said in a prepared statement.

The vehicle used in the attack was stolen, the army said.

Cryptic claim

A cryptic message claiming responsibility for the attack appeared on Twitter from a user with the name "al-Nusra Front in Lebanon." It claimed to be affiliated with the Syrian al Qaeda affiliate with the same name.

CNN cannot confirm the authenticity of the Twitter user or the claim. Al Nusra Front in Syria has not commented on the attack.

The message did not contain details that are typical of claims of responsibility by well-established terrorist groups.

Previous bombing

In early January, four people died in Haret Hreik, and 77 more were injured, when a car bomb exploded, NNA reported.

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, a Sunni Islamist militant group, claimed responsibility for that attack, calling it the "first small payment" in a bigger push against the Lebanon-based Shiite militia Hezbollah.

ISIS, which is an affiliate of the al Qaeda terrorist organization, is one of the rebel groups fighting to overthrow autocratic Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Hezbollah -- also considered a terrorist organization by the United States -- is fighting beside al-Assad's troops, who are trying to quash the rebellion in Syria.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
July 14, 2014 -- Updated 1043 GMT (1843 HKT)
For the first time in 24 years, Germany has lifted the World Cup after beating Argentina 1-0 in extra time.
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 2145 GMT (0545 HKT)
Do you know your gurkentruppe from your bananenflanken? CNN helps.
July 14, 2014 -- Updated 1129 GMT (1929 HKT)
Police moved in just one hour before Rui Chenggang was due to appear on air, leaving his anchor chair empty.
July 14, 2014 -- Updated 0927 GMT (1727 HKT)
A salvage team will attempt to float the ill-fated Costa Concordia again. CNN's Erin McLaughlin reports.
July 13, 2014 -- Updated 2058 GMT (0458 HKT)
Tichleman 1
A makeup artist, writer and model who loves monkeys and struggles with demons.
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 1029 GMT (1829 HKT)
Why are Iraqi politicians dragging their feet while ISIS militants fortify their foothold across the country?
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 1332 GMT (2132 HKT)
An elephant, who was chained for 50 years, cries tears of joy after being freed in India. CNN's Sumnima Udas reports.
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 1634 GMT (0034 HKT)
People walk with their luggage at the Maiquetia international airport that serves Caracas on July 3, 2014. A survey by pollster Datanalisis revealed that 25% of the population surveyed (end of May) has at least one family member or friend who has emigrated from the country. AFP PHOTO/Leo RAMIREZ (Photo credit should read LEO RAMIREZ/AFP/Getty Images)
Plane passengers are used to paying additional fees, but one airport in Venezuela is now charging for the ultimate hidden extra -- air.
July 11, 2014 -- Updated 0732 GMT (1532 HKT)
Beneath a dusty town in northeastern Pakistan, CNN explores a cold labyrinth of hidden tunnels that was once a safe haven for militants.
July 10, 2014 -- Updated 0444 GMT (1244 HKT)
CNN's Ben Wedeman visits the Yazji family and finds out what it's like living life in the middle of conflict.
CNN joins the fight to end modern-day slavery by shining a spotlight on its horrors and highlighting success stories.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT