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DOUBLE BOMBING IN DAMASCUS KILLED DOZENS

DOUBLE BOMBING IN DAMASCUS
 
 KILLED DOZENS



Two explosions, on Thursday 05/10/2012 morning, have hit al-Qazzaz suburb in the Syrian capital, Damascus, killing at least 55 and wounding 300 in what Syrian state TV say were "terrorist bombings".

State TV footage of the blasts showed massive destruction in the al-Qazzaz suburb to the south of Damascus said to house a military intelligence complex. Damascus has been the target of several bombs in past months amid continuing anti-government unrest.

The head of the UN observer mission in Syria, Maj Gen Robert Mood from Norway, has visited the site of the explosions.

A first explosion occurred shortly before 08:00 (05:00 GMT) as people headed into work.
The first blast was apparently to attract people to the scene and was quickly followed by a second, much bigger explosion, a local journalist who spoke to eyewitnesses said (see also -Damascus 03.17.12).

The district targeted is said to house a military intelligence complex, including the headquarters, 10 floors high, of the counter-terrorism operation for the military security in Syria, involved in President Bashar Assad's crackdown on the ongoing Sooni protests (see - SYRIAN DILEMA). Next to it was another military security intelligence building which was also destroyed in the attack. 

Meanwhile, the Syrian army has bombarded the city of Homs overnight (see - Homs Massacre). Opposition activists described it as some of the heaviest shelling in Homs for weeks. Eleven United Nations monitors are now stationed there to try to implement a ceasefire. There are now about 70 monitors in Syria as a whole, but their presence has had no effect in quelling the violence. Violence was reported in several parts of the country on Wednesday, including the northern province of Idlib and the city of Hama.

The UN says at least 9,000 people have died since pro-democracy protests began in March 2011. In February, Syria's government put the death toll at 3,838 - 2,493 civilians and 1,345 security forces personnel.
 
* Although no group claimed responsibility on the attack it bears a clear hallmark of Al Qaeda in Iraq.
 
* The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said, on Thursday 05/17/2012, that Islamist militants from Al Qaeda must be behind the bombings.
 
 
* Related topics ;

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10/05/2012 10:03:03


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