At Least 18 Dead in Car Bombings in Damascus

At Least 18 Dead in Car Bombings in Damascus

At Least 18 Dead in Car Bombings in Damascus

It says a suicide auto bomber struck near Tahreer Square in central Damascus early Sunday, and that two other bombs went off after security forces chased other attackers. State media says the security forces intercepted the two other auto bombs, suggesting they were controlled explosions.

As they closed in on the third vehicle near the city's Al-Tahrir Square, the suicide bomber on board detonated it.

Read the full BBC article.

A suicide attacker blew himself up early Sunday after being surrounded by security forces.

State television said the "terrorists" had meant to target busy areas on the first day back to work after the Eid al-Fitr holiday, which follows Ramadan.

Pro-government forces have engaged in heavy fighting in Damascus' suburbs during the war, but have largely kept the rebels out of the city center.

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No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks, but the jihadis of Islamic State and militants linked to al-Qaeda have claimed recent attacks inside the city.

It was a rare attack on Damascus - the seat of President Bashar Assad's government - despite the Syrian War having raged on in the country since 2011.

Syrian authorities said that the vehicle bomber was one of three intended for Tahrir Square, the city center.

The auto bomb went off in the Bab Touma district of the capital.

In March, two bomb attacks in the capital killed over 40 people - the majority of them Iraqi pilgrims visiting the Bab al-Saghir cemetery, which houses Shia mausoleums.

Also in March, a double suicide attack in the capital killed scores of people, majority Iraqi Shi'ite pilgrims.

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