According to a Lebanese security official, one suicide attacker detonated his explosives’ vest outside a Shiite Mosque, while the second blew himself up inside a nearby bakery.
An apparent third suicide attacker was found dead, his legs blown off while he still wore an intact explosives’ belt, says the official, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with regulations. The official speculates the third may have been killed from the explosion of the second suicide attacker, as he was reportedly close to that blast.
The Al-Mayadeen TV also reports there was a third would-be suicide attacker, describing him as a bearded young man who wore an explosives’ belt. The report says he was killed before he was able to detonate the explosives.
Hospitals in southern Beirut are calling on people to donate blood and appealing on residents not to gather at the hospital gates so that ambulanced and emergency staff can work unhindered.
Shortly after the explosions, ambulances rushed to the area and started evacuating the wounded and the dead as Lebanese troops and Hezbollah gunmen cordoned the area, preventing anyone from getting close.
“There is a massacre inside and we will not let you take photos,” a Hezbollah member screamed at an Associated Press photographer at the scene.
Hezbollah also called on people to leave all coffee shops in the area, which are usually packed with people, and urged residents to inform the group about any suspicious moves.