Prominent Lebanese journalist seriously wounded by car bomb
BEIRUT, Lebanon – A bomb rigged to the car of a prominent journalist for an anti-Syrian television station exploded Sunday, severing the woman’s arm and leg in the latest in a string of targeted explosions in Lebanon.May Chidiac, a political talk show host with the private Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation, was inside her car when the bomb exploded in Ghadir, a town near the Christian port city of Jounieh, north of the capital, Lebanese security officials and the TV station said.Late Sunday, Hotel Dieu Hospital in Beirut reported that Chidiac’s left arm and leg were severed in the blast and her right leg and pelvis were broken. A hospital statement said she was suffering from various injuries and burns all over her body, adding that her vital organs were “stable” but would need careful monitoring over the next few days.A series of bombings has occurred in the Lebanese capital since a massive bomb killed former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and 20 other people on Feb. 14.Opponents of Syria’s role in Lebanon have accused Damascus and its allies in the Lebanese security services of involvement in the killing of Hariri. Syria denies any role in the assassination, which prompted a wave of anti-Syrian protests here and helped end Syria’s almost three-decade domination of Lebanon.Lebanon has been rife with speculation of more attacks as chief U.N. investigator Detlev Mehlis prepares to issue his report into the assassination in late October.Prime Minister Fuad Saniora, speaking to reporters outside the hospital in Jounieh, said the bomb, like other recent explosions, was related to the Hariri investigation.”There is no doubt it is all related, we don’t want to deny that,” Saniora said.Saniora said he had asked the U.S. ambassador for technical assistance. No further details were immediately available.President Emile Lahoud condemned the attack and called for unity among the Lebanese, while student unions planned sit-in protests at universities and in downtown Beirut on Monday.A security official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press, said the bomb was made up of less than two pounds of plastic explosives, placed under the driver’s seat. Television footage from the scene showed part of the car’s left door was blown off while the front of the vehicle was a twisted wreck.Chidiac, in her 40s, is one of several hosts of a daily political talk show that is seen widely in the Arab world. She was hosting the show Sunday morning with a political analyst from the leading An-Nahar newspaper.LBC, a Christian TV station, is among the most prominent of anti-Syrian media outlets.On June 2, the anti-Syrian journalist Samir Kassir was killed by a bomb placed under the seat of his car.Vail, Colorado
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