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Urgent calls for a truce to end fighting in Lebanon

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Urgent calls for a truce to end fighting in Lebanon


For the second night in a row, the Lebanese capital has been rocked by a bomb blast. The explosion in West Beirut’s upmarket Muslim neighbourhood of Verdun injured several people and caused widespread damage. It is not clear if the device was placed inside or under a parked four-wheel drive but police estimate 15 kilos of explosives were used.

On Sunday night, a bomb near a shopping centre in the Christian sector killed one woman and injured 12 others. Lebanon’s Information Minister Gazi al-Aridi called for solidarity from the people during a session of parliament: “We condemn what happened and we urge the Lebanese people to unite. This murderous act focuses again on our invitation to the Lebanese to stand behind their state and its institutions – strengthening national unity is the only response to terrorist acts.”

Intense fighting continued throughout the day yesterday at the Nahr-el-Bared camp near Tripoli, where the Lebanese Army are battling a militant group, Fatah al-Islam, suspected of links with al Qaeda.

At least 58 people have died since the conflict broke out on Sunday. Red Cross officials continue to appeal for a truce to allow aid agencies to reach those worst affected by the violence.

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