BEIRUT: Grand Mufti Sheikh Mohammad Rashid Qabbani said the twin bombings targeting two mosques in north Lebanon was an invitation for infighting between Lebanese, asking Sunnis and Shiites to come together and resist the provocation.
“You the Lebanese, the mask of strife has fallen in the southern suburbs and Tripoli, and is inviting you to fight,” Qabbani said in a televised message.
“A real invitation to fight was sent to you. Do you recognize this terrorist message and the murderous call behind it?” he asked.
Twin bombings targeted two separate mosques in the northern city of Tripoli following Friday prayers killing 27 people and wounding over 300.
The deadly attacks came days after a car bomb ripped through the neighborhood of Ruwaiss, a Hezbollah stronghold, in Beirut’s southern suburbs killing 30.
The mufti also called on the Lebanese “to wake up from the disputes of their leaders and overcome their own.”
In his message, Qabbani sought to calm simmering sectarian tensions that have hardened in recent years as a result of the Syria war.
“Muslims should know that the bombing in the southern suburbs last week is not a bomb planted by Sunnis and that the explosion in Tripoli was not a Shiite bomb...instead they [were planted] by those seeking to involve Lebanon in regional conflicts,” the Mufti said.
“Tomorrow, they will bomb all the areas in Lebanon to ignite Sunni-Shiite strife and strife in the region,” he added.
He added that Israel benefits from divisions among Muslims and internal disputes should not distract them from their main pursuit which is the Palestinian case.
"Face the strife and such provocation by rising above wounds, by coming together over our grief and lessening the distance between us to face future pains and misfortunes together,” he said.
“ Lebanon will not stand in the face of these crises if you are not united,” the mufti said.