At least four people were killed and a hundred others injured Wednesday when two car bombs were detonated near the Iranian cultural center in a Shiite neighborhood of the Lebanese capital.

The Abdullah Azzam Brigades, a group linked to al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack in Beirut's Bir Hassan district, which also hosts the Kuwaiti Embassy.

Lebanon's security minister, Wael Abu Faur, initially spoke of five fatalities, but later reduced the official death toll to four, though police sources told Efe that seven people died.

Kuwait's embassy said its staff escaped unscathed. The Iranians, meanwhile, said none of the employees of the cultural center was badly hurt.

The two vehicle held a total of roughly 160 kilos (352 lbs.) of explosives, the Lebanese military said.

The explosions also damaged vehicles and buildings in Bir Hassan, regarded as a stronghold of the Shiite Hezbollah movement.

The double-bombing came four days after the formation of a new governing coalition that includes Hezbollah.

Prime Minister Tamam Salaam called the attack "a message from the terrorist groups, determined to prosecute their plan of discord and indiscriminate massacres in Lebanon."

The Abdullah Azzam Brigades said the bombings were in retaliation for Iranian and Hezbollah support of President Bashar Assad's regime in the Syrian civil war.

The same group claimed responsibility for a Nov. 19 attack on Iran's embassy in Beirut that left 24 people dead and nearly 150 wounded. EFE