BEIRUT - A statement in the name of the al-Qaida-linked militant group Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility on Saturday for a suicide bombing in the Hezbollah stronghold of southern Beirut that killed at least five people two days ago.

The purported ISIL claim, which also warned of further attacks, came in a statement responding to an offensive against the group by rival forces in northern Syria over the last two days in which dozens of people have been killed.

The statement said the fighting in Syria had been launched at a time when the Islamic State had "breached the borders and penetrated the security system of the Party of Satan in Lebanon" - an ironic reference to Hezbollah, whose name means Party of God in Arabic.

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