- Title: LEBANON: Blast in Iraq embassy kills at least 14
- Date: 15th December 1981
- Summary: BEIRUT, LEBANON (VISNEWS) **QUALITY AS INCOMING** GV Devastated five-storey Iraq Embassy building GV PAN Rescue workers at site of blast (2 shots) GV Rescue workers climbing through wreckage GV Devastated building SV Body being carried away and put into ambulance LV & GV Bomb damaged building tilting over and people being helped of upper storeys by rescue workers GV Ambulance leaving scene
- Embargoed: 30th December 1981 12:00
- Location: Lebanon, Lebanon
- Country: Lebanon
- Topics: Crime / Law Enforcement
- Reuters ID: LVA3MDY4CHO8KB5GAXEQ42BLH2P5
- Aspect Ratio:
- Story Text: INTRODUCTION: A massive explosion destroyed Iraq's Embassy in Beirut on Tuesday (15 December) killing at least 14 people and injuring almost a hundred.In the first hours after the blast, it was unclear whether the ambassador, Abdel Razzak Mohammed Lafta, was among the dead or still buried under the rubble.More than eight hours after the bomb went off there were still several members of the embassy staff missing.
SYNOPSIS: The five-storey embassy building was half demolished while the shattered remainder was left hanging at a crazy and dangerous angle.
The official Iraqi news agency says a suicide squad drove into the embassy compound in an explosive-packed car and detonated the bomb while still inside.However, Lebanese security forces say the bombers planted five charges each weighing 20 kilograms at the base of pillars supporting the rear of the building.
Rescue workers had to sift through the rubble to find the dead and wounded.However, there were still a number of embassy staff inside the teetering remains and they had to be escorted down after it had been determined the structure was not in danger of imminent collapse.
Iraq has accused agents from Syria and Iran with responsibility.Iraq is at war with Iran and at loggerheads with Syria, ruled by a rival faction of the Arab Socialist party.The Lebanese Foreign Minister has denounced the explosion as a very serious matter saying the sanctity of embassies should always be respected.
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