Two car bombs rocked Tripoli in northern Lebanon Friday, killing at least 29 people and wounding more than 350 others.
The blasts, the second explosion in Lebanon in less than a week, hit amid fears that violence from Syria’s civil war is spilling into neighboring Lebanon. Tripoli has been the site of frequent clashes between its predominantly Sunni Muslim population and the Alawites, a Shiite offshoot sect to which Syrian President Bashar Assad belongs. But the bombs mark a major escalation in violence.
Attacks on Sunni strongholds like Tripoli have been rare in recent years, and Friday’s bombing has sparked concern that violence in Syria has entered a phase of tit-for-tat attacks.
Hizballah, the militant Shiite group that has provided support to Assad, strongly condemned what it called the “criminal project that aims to sow the seeds of civil strife between the Lebanese and drag them into sectarian and ethnic infighting.”