Two bombs exploded near a military bus in Syria’s
Damascus early morning Wednesday killing 14 people and wounding several others,
according to the country’s government-run media. Wednesday’s bombing was the
deadliest attack in Damascus in several years and a rare occurrence since the
government forces captured the Syrian suburbs held by insurgents.
The explosions are said to have occurred in central
Damascus at a main bus transfer point under the Hafex-al-Assad bridge, where
vehicles converge and then go into different directions. It was early in the
morning and people were heading to school and work. Local media reported that a
third bomb was found in the area and dismantled. No group has taken
responsibility for the attack so far.
Damascus police commander Major General Hussein Jumaa
termed the bombings “a cowardly act” and said that the police have cordoned off
the area promptly and made sure that there were no more bombs in vicinity. He appealed
to people to call the police if they see anything suspicious.
Nearly one hour after the explosions, workers cleaned
up the spot and removed the charred remains of the bus.
While Wednesday’s attack was big in proportion, there
have been a series of attacks on Syrian military forces over the last one year.
Terrorists associated with the Islamic State are suspected to be behind such
attacks, according to a Reuters report which states that Islamic State
militants still operate in Syria’s sprawling desert area.
Syria is still recuperating from the pangs of a
decade-long civil war that destroyed much of the country. The human cost of the
civil war itself was immense with the United Nations pinning the death toll at
around 350,000. Nearly half of the country’s population was displaced.
Explosions in Syria have reduced significantly since
President Bashar Assad’s forces took control over the country’s rebel enclaves.
Assad has received help from Russia’s
military presence and Iran’s Shi’ite militias.
(With inputs from Associated Press)