IS attack in Beirut kills over 40

The jihadist organisation Islamic State (IS) has claimed responsibility for the double suicide attack on the residential neighbourhood of Bourj al-Barajneh, in Beirut, on Thursday.

The attack killed more than 40 people and wounded more than 200, according to a local news outlet. According to the Lebanese army, two suicide bombers walking through crowded streets in the Ain al-Sikkeh area of Bourj al-Barajneh detonated explosive belts within minutes of each other, at about 6 p.m. A third would-be suicide bomber was found dead at the scene, local media reported, before he was able to detonate his explosive belt. The attack was the first to hit Lebanon’s capital since a suicide bomber detonated himself in a hotel in June 2014.

Violence from neighbouring Syria has spilled over into Lebanon in the past few years – in the form of kidnappings, cross-border shelling, and car bombings. Several Syrian extremist groups, including Jabhat al Nusra, claimed responsibility for a series of bombings in the Beirut suburbs in 2013 and 2014. Such attacks have killed scores of people.