Lebanon's top security council meets over deadly bombing

Photo: Lebanon's top security council meets over deadly bombing / Arabic region

Lebanon's top security body held a crisis meeting Saturday, a day after a car bombing in Beirut killed a former minister who was an outspoken critic of Syria, dpa reported.

The Higher Defence Council, headed by President Michel Suleiman, reviewed preliminary investigations into the bombing, the latest to have occurred in Beirut in recent months, a senior official said.

"The council was briefed on the information gathered on this crime," Mohammed Khayar, the council's secretary general, said without elaborating.

The council will not release the decisions it took at the meeting, he said.

The death toll in Friday's explosion in central Beirut, rose from six to seven after a teenager died Saturday of injuries he sustained in the attack, the official National News Agency reported.

Former finance minister Mohammed Shattah was killed in the bombing. He was to be buried Sunday in Beirut.

His Western-backed March 14 bloc has called on all Lebanese to attend Shattah's funeral to "express national rage" over his killing.

Shattah, 61, was killed as he was reportedly heading to a meeting of anti-Syrian Lebanese politicians.

Syria's civil war of nearly three years has fanned tensions in politically fragile Lebanon and occasionally sparked deadly clashes among supporters and opponents there of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

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