Western powers, Syria decry deadly Beirut car bombing
PARIS (AFP) - European countries, the United States (US) and even Syria condemned Friday's car bombing in Beirut that killed eight people and wounded 86 more, stirring fears that the Syrian civil war could fan divisions in Lebanon.
The attack prompted two of Lebanon's top anti-Damascus political leaders to accuse Syrian President Bashar al-Assad of being behind the violence that claimed the life of the intelligence chief of Lebanon's Internal Security Forces (ISF), General Wissam al-Hassan.
"We accuse Bashar al-Assad of the assassination of Wissam al-Hassam, the guarantor of the security of the Lebanese," opposition chief Saad Hariri told a Lebanese TV station - a view echoed by Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, a longtime critic of Damascus.
But Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi himself condemned the attack, saying that "these sort of terrorist, cowardly attacks are unjustifiable wherever they occur." In Washington, US State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland said there was no justification for the violence.