Scores killed and wounded in twin blasts in Beirut’s southern suburbs

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At least 37 people were killed in a twin bombing that rocked a Hezbollah-stronghold in Beirut’s southern suburbs on Thursday, the Lebanese Red Cross said.

A Lebanese security source at the scene told dpa that the number of wounded has increased to more than 100, some suffering from minor wounds from shattered glass, but around 40 suffered serious injuries.

The two blasts went off near the Mansour shopping centre and Ain Al Siki in Bourj al-Barajneh, Lebanon’s state broadcaster said.

Residents in the area said that they first heard an explosion and then when they rushed to the scene another blast went off.

Rubble and pools of blood covered the street.

“We felt it was like an earthquake,” Hussein Harakeh, a resident in the area, told dpa.

“I was sitting with my two children watching television. Suddenly we heard a big noise and all the glass in my house was shattered. One of my children received minor wounds, but we are lucky we are still alive,” said Um Ahmad, another resident.

Hezbollah security men and Lebanese troops were seen roaming the streets, asking people to leave the site for fear that there might be more blasts.

Hospitals in Beirut’s southern suburbs called on people to rush to donate blood due to the heavy casualties.

Some of the wounded were brought to hospital on scooters as ambulances were unavailable, residents said.

Initial reports said two suicide bombers who were walking down the street blew themselves up.

The place where the blasts took place is a heavily populated area.

Syrian opposition rebels have threatened to bomb Hezbollah areas as the movement has been fighting alongside Syrian president Bahsar al-Assad since the uprising in Syria started in 2011.

Beirut’s southern suburbs witnessed similar attacks in the years 2013 and 2014. The area is heavily guarded by Hezbollah with checkpoints scattered across it.

The blasts took place just a few hours after the Syrian Army and Hezbollah recaptured a strategic town od al-Hader from Islamist rebels in the northern province of Aleppo.

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