Blasts at Iranian Embassy in Beirut Kill at Least 23

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from The New York Times,

Two explosions rocked the Iranian Embassy compound in Beirut on Tuesday, killing at least 23 people and injuring scores, according to the Lebanese Health Ministry.

Semiofficial Iranian news agencies reported that the embassy’s cultural attaché, Sheikh Ibrahim Ansari, was severely wounded and was undergoing surgery. Earlier in the day, the Iranian ambassador, Ghazanfar Roknabadi, had told Lebanese television that the attaché had been killed.

The attack seemed to fit a pattern of deepening political and sectarian division across the Middle East, inspired by the civil war in Syria. That conflict has drawn in fighters from neighboring Lebanon on both sides: Sunni militants have flocked to fight alongside the rebels while Hezbollah, the powerful Shiite organization allied with Iran, has sent its militia to support President Bashar al-Assad.

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