Deadly bombs hit Syrian capital

2013-06-11 12:02
In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrians inspect a damaged shop at a scene of two explosions in the central district of Marjeh, Damascus, Syria. (SANA/ AP)

In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrians inspect a damaged shop at a scene of two explosions in the central district of Marjeh, Damascus, Syria. (SANA/ AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Damascus — Two suicide bombers hit a central Damascus square on Tuesday, killing at least 14 people, activists and the state media reported. Activists said one of the explosions took place inside the police station there and that many among the dead were policemen.

Syrian state TV quoted a security official as saying 14 people died in explosions caused by two "terrorist" suicide bombers near a police station in the bustling Marjeh Square in the heart of the capital. The official said another 31 were wounded.

The state-TV Ikhbariya TV station showed footage of broken shop facades and mangled cars in the central square as ambulance workers were seen carrying the wounded on stretchers.

Marjeh Square was scene to previous attacks earlier this year.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has a network of activists on the ground in Syria, said 15 were killed in the explosions, one of which caused by a man who blew himself up inside the police station in Marjeh square. The Observatory said the other explosion occurred outside the police station. It was not immediately possible to reconcile the two accounts.

Both the media and activists had originally reported two dead.

Preparing for offensive

Suicide attacks and car bombs have become common in Damascus. Tuesday's twin explosions in the capital are the first since government troops, backed by fighters from Lebanon's Shi'ite group Hezbollah, captured Qusayr, a strategic town in the central province of Homs, the linchpin linking Damascus with the regime strongholds on the Mediterranean coast.

Following the capture of Qusayr, Syrian state-run media and the Hezbollah-owned Al-Manar TV have said the regime is preparing an offensive reportedly named Operation Northern Storm to recapture Aleppo. The regime was also believed to be advancing on the central city of Homs.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but car bombs and suicide attacks targeting Damascus and other cities that remain under government control have been claimed in the past by the al-Qaeda affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra — one of scores of rebel factions fighting the forces of President Bashar Assad.

On Saturday, a suicide bomber detonated his explosives-laden car in the central city of Homs, tearing through an area largely populated by the regime's Alawite sect and killing seven people.

Syria's conflict started with largely peaceful protests against Assad's regime in March 2011 but eventually turned into a civil war that has killed more than 80 000 people, according to the United Nations.

Read more on:    bashar assad  |  syria  |  syria conflict  |  uprisings

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.