Thursday, November 29, 2012

Car bombs kill 34 in pro-Assad Damascus suburb

Photo taken on Nov. 28, 2012 shows the wreckage of a vehicle at a blast site at the main square in Jaramana, suburb of Damascus, Syria. (Xinhua/Hazim)
(Reuters) - Two car bombs killed at least 34 people in a district of Damascus loyal to President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday in the deadliest attack on the Syrian capital in months.

The explosions struck the eastern neighbourhood of Jaramana, home to many of Syria's Druze minority as well as Christians who have fled violence elsewhere, ripping through shops and bringing debris crashing down on cars.

Once a bastion of security in Assad's 20-month campaign to crush an uprising against his rule, Damascus has been hit with increasing regularity as the rebels grow bolder.

State media said a bomb also detonated in the southern town of Bosra al-Sham, near Deraa, where the revolt began with peaceful street protests in March 2011. It also said eight "terrorists" were killed near Damascus while they tried to booby-trap a car with a bomb.

Authorities severely limit independent media in Syria and it was not immediately possible to verify reports. The government said 34 people were killed in Damascus but did not give a casualty count for the Bosra al-Sham bombing.

The attacks followed two weeks of military gains by rebels who have stormed and taken army bases across Syria, exposing Assad's loss of control in northern and eastern regions despite the devastating air power which he has used to bombard opposition strongholds.

read more/full story from REUTERS
By Dominic Evans
BEIRUT | Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:26pm GMT

more photos from XINHUA here
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