Seventeen killed in Syrian car bomb blast

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Seventeen people have been killed and a further fourteen injured today in a car bomb blast in the Syrian capital Damascus.

A Syrian television station said that the area has been cordoned off by the Damascus police force. The area where the bomb went off was Mahlak Street which is close to a security post on the road leading to the international airport and also close to a shrine which was popular with Iranian, Iraqi and Lebanese pilgrims.

According to the television station that told the news, the car was packed with 200kg of plastic explosives. Car bomb attacks are rare in this area, the station claims.

This blast has been the first since the assassination of Imad Moughniyah, the military commander of the Hezbollah Islamist group in February this year. A senior security officer was also killed at a beach resort near the port of Tartous under mysterious circumstances. Several explosions blamed on Sunni Muslim militants opposed to Syria's secular government have also taken place over the last few years.