Over 40 killed in bomb­ings of Syr­ian govt con­trolled ar­eas

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide -

AT least 40 peo­ple have been killed and dozens wounded in five ex­plo­sions across mostly gov­ern­ment­con­trolled ar­eas of Syria, ac­cord­ing to state media re­ports.

Yes­ter­day morn­ing’s blasts hit the coastal city of Tar­tus, the cen­tral city of Homs, the sub­urbs of the cap­i­tal Da­m­as­cus as well as the north­east­ern city of Hasaka, which is mostly con­trolled by Kur­dish forces but where the gov­ern­ment main­tains a pres­ence.

State media said at least 11 peo­ple were killed and 45 in­jured in a dou­ble bomb at­tack just out­side Tar­tus, in the coastal prov­ince of the same name, which is a base 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,” Syr­ian state tele­vi­sion said.

State media also re­ported five peo­ple killed in Hasaka, in the north­east of the coun­try.

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

And state media also re­ported a car bomb at the en­trance to the Al-Zahra neigh­bour­hood in Homs, which is con­trolled by the gov­ern­ment.

It said at least two peo­ple were killed and four wounded in the bomb­ing, which is the lat­est in a se­ries of at­tacks tar­get­ing Al-Zahra, where most res­i­dents are Alaw­ite, the sect to which Pres­i­dent Bashar al-As­sad be­longs.

State media also re­ported an­other bomb at­tack on a road west of the cap­i­tal Da­m­as­cus, but gave no im­me­di­ate toll in the blast.

That at­tack tar­geted a check­point and left three peo­ple dead, said the SOHR.

Top diplo­mats from the US and Rus­sia yes­ter­day failed to reach a deal to ease fight­ing in Syria amid the string of bomb at­tacks in the coun­try.

As blasts maimed and killed in Syria, a se­nior State De­part­ment of­fi­cial said fresh cri­sis talks be­tween Sec­re­tary of State John Kerry and Rus­sian For­eign Min­is­ter Sergei Lavrov on the mar­gins of the G20 sum­mit in China had ended without agree­ment.

A deal to pro­vide aid to Aleppo’s rav­aged civil­ians and at least par­tially halt Rus­sian and Syr­ian bom­bard­ments had looked likely on Sun­day, be­fore talks col­lapsed.

US of­fi­cials ac­cused Rus­sia of back­track­ing on al­ready agreed is­sues which Wash­ing­ton re­fused to re­visit, but the talks seemed to have been over­taken by de­vel­op­ments on the ground.

Syr­ian gov­ern­ment troops re­newed their siege of Aleppo on Sun­day, with state media say­ing they had taken an area south of the city, sev­er­ing the last op­po­si­tion-held route into its eastern neigh­bour­hoods.

Once Syria’s eco­nomic pow­er­house, Aleppo has been rav­aged by the war that be­gan with protests against Pres­i­dent Bashar al-As­sad’s gov­ern­ment in March 2011.— Al Jazeera

Two bombs ex­ploded at the en­trance to Tar­tus (pic­tured above), a gov­ern­ment-held city in Syria’s coast, SANA news agency re­ported yes­ter­day. A car bomb blew up at the Ar­zoneh bridge and was fol­lowed by a sui­cide bomb­ing. Tar­tus is home to a Rus­sian naval base. — Al Jazeera

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