Al-Qaida-linked group Abdullah Azzam Brigades claim deadly Beirut blasts

BEIRUT - An al-Qaida-linked group has claimed responsibility for twin suicide bombings that struck outside the Iranian Embassy in Beirut, killing 23 people, including an Iranian diplomat.

The obscure Abdullah Azzam Brigades said it carried out the mid-morning bombings on Tuesday in a southern Beirut Hezbollah stronghold.

The authenticity of the claim could not be independently verified but it was posted on a militant website and on the Twitter account of Sirajuddin Zurayqat, a prominent Islamic militant leader.

The group says it will continue with such attacks until the Iranian-backed Hezbollah group withdraws its forces from Syria, where the group is fighting alongside President Bashar Assad's forces against the mostly Sunni rebels seeking to topple him. 

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