String of bomb blasts hit across Syria, dozens killed

2016-09-05 12:02
(Aris Messinis, AFP)

(Aris Messinis, AFP)

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

Beirut - A string of bomb attacks hit across mostly government-controlled areas of Syria on Monday, killing at least 23 people and wounding dozens more, state media said.

The blasts hit government-held Tartus and Homs, as well as Hasakeh, which is mostly controlled by Kurdish forces but where the regime maintains a presence.

State media said at least 11 people had been killed and 45 injured in a double bomb attack just outside the city of Tartus, in the coastal province of the same name, which is a stronghold of President Bashar al-Assad's government.

"Two terrorist blasts on Arzuna bridge, the first a car bomb and the second a suicide bomber who detonated his explosive belt when people gathered to help the wounded," state television said.

Tartus has been largely spared the worst violence of Syria's conflict since it began with anti-government protests in March 2011.

It has become a refuge for many Syrians fleeing violence that has displaced over half the country's population.

State media also reported eight people killed in a bombing in Hasakeh, in the northeast of the country.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitor, said the blast hit a checkpoint belonging to the Kurdish Asayesh security forces.

Hasakeh city has been regularly targeted by the Islamic State group, including in July, when a motorcycle bomber killed at least 16 people outside a bakery in the city.

Monday's bombings came after advances by Turkish forces and allied Syrian rebels expelled IS from the last stretch of the Syrian-Turkish border under their control.

The jihadist group has been losing ground to both an alliance of Kurdish and Arab fighters known as the Syrian Democratic Forces and, more recently, a Turkish offensive involving rebels loyal to Ankara.

'Simultaneous' attacks

In central Homs city, state media said at least three people were killed in a car bomb at the entrance to the Al-Zahraa neighbourhood, whose residents mostly belong to the same Alawite sect as Assad.

Al-Zahraa has also been regularly targeted in bomb attacks, including a devastating double bomb blast in February that killed 57 people and was claimed by IS.

State television broadcast images from the aftermath of the blast in Homs, showing rubble strewn on the streets and smoke rising from the charred remains of vehicles.

Another bomb attack was also reported on the Al-Sabura road west of the capital Damascus, with state media saying one person had been killed and three injured in that bombing.

The Observatory said that attack targeted a checkpoint and gave a toll of three dead.

Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said the blasts appeared to be coordinated.

"Clearly these attacks were simultaneous and they all targeted security posts," he told AFP.

More than 290,000 people have been killed in Syria since March 2011, and millions displaced by the fighting.

Successive rounds of international negotiations aimed at find a political solution have failed to bear fruit, though US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov are due to resume discussions on stemming the violence on Monday.

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.

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.