Minister: Islamic State carried out Lebanon cafe attack

January 11, 2015 16:55


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BEIRUT - A double suicide attack that killed eight people at a cafe in the Lebanese city of Tripoli was carried out by the Islamic State group, the interior minister said on Sunday, contradicting a claim of responsibility by the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front.

Nohad Machnouk also said he expected more instability linked to the Syrian civil war that has been at the heart of repeated violence in Lebanon over the last four years.

The Nusra Front said on Saturday it was behind the bombing in the Alawite neighborhood of Jabal Mohsen - an attack Lebanese leaders said aimed to ignite communal strife in a predominantly Sunni Muslim city where long-standing sectarian tensions have been inflamed by the Syrian conflict.

Machnouk said investigators were questioning men who belonged to the same organization as the two bombers, both of whom have been identified as men from Tripoli.

"The initial information so far says that criminal state of Daesh was the one behind the bombing," Machnouk told journalists in Tripoli, using an pejorative Arabic acronym for the group that has seized wide areas of Syria and Iraq.

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