Lebanon Charges 7 More People in Tripoli Bombings
Seven more people have been charged over deadly bomb attacks in the Lebanese city of Tripoli in which a Syrian security official is also reportedly implicated, a judicial source said Tuesday, according to AFP.
The double bombing killed 45 people on August 23 in the majority Sunni town, which has regularly seen clashes between Sunni supporters of the Syrian uprising and Alawite backers of the Damascus government.
Three of those newly charged are in detention and the other four are at large, the source told AFP.
The latest charges bring to 11 the number of people accused of involvement in the attacks which targeted Sunni mosques in the northern port city.
Local media said some of those charged were Alawites, members of the same offshoot of Shiite Islam as Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.
One of the new suspects, Youssef Diab, 19, is from Tripoli’s Alawite district of Jabal Mohsen and was arrested in the area last week, reported AFP.
Two Lebanese and two Syrians were already charged on August 30, while a third Lebanese citizen was released with charges dropped.
The two Syrians, who are not believed to be in Lebanon, have been accused of having placed two car bombs and face the death penalty.
According to Lebanese media, one of the Syrians, Captain Mohammed Ali, is a security official based in Tartus, a Syrian city on the Mediterranean close to Tripoli.
The civil war in neighboring Syria has led to sectarian clashes in Lebanon, especially since the Lebanon-based Hezbollah joined the fighting in Syria.
Hezbollah has been accused of participating in the slaughter of Syrian civilians, as well as other war crimes. In a recently released video, Hezbollah fighters are seen executing unarmed prisoners after dragging them from a van.
The bombings in Tripoli came two weeks after at least 20 people were killed on August 15 by a large explosion in the Hezbollah stronghold in Beirut. A month earlier, over 50 people were wounded when a car bomb exploded in the same area.