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The United Nations Security Council on Friday condemned two coordinated bombings which killed at least 42 people and injured 400 in Tripoli, northern Lebanon.
Appealing to all Lebanese to preserve national unity and reject sectarian violence, the Council said it condemned the terrorist attack on the port city and underlined the urgency to bring the perpetrators of “the heinous act” to justice.
The Security Council statement also reaffirmed that “terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security” and also reiterated the need to combat “threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.”
The members of the Council highlighted the importance for all Lebanese parties to respect the country’s policy of disassociation and to refrain from “any involvement in the Syrian crisis” to be consistent with their commitment in the Baabda Declaration.
The deal, approved in June last year, is aimed to keep Lebanon neutral from regional tensions and crisis.
The two blasts outside Sunni mosques packed with worshippers for Friday afternoon prayers, are considered by local residents to be the deadliest in Tripoli since the end of Lebanon’s civil war (1975-1990).
Many fear a major escalation of sectarian violence in Lebanon – a likely spillover domino effect caused by the sectarian civil war in Syria.
The Friday attacks were also reminiscent of the kind of tit-for-tat tactics that left tens of thousands dead, injured and homeless during the civil war. On August 15, a bomb killed 26 people in the southern district of the capital Beirut, believed to be a centre of support for the Shia militia group Hezbollah.
Hezbollah immediately issued a strongly worded statement condemning the Friday bombings and expressed “utmost solidarity” with the people of Tripoli, while the highest Sunni authority, the Grand Mufti, urged calm and restraint.