Hardline group in Syria claims deadly Damascus bombings

  • Groups claims responsibility for twin bombing;
  • Bombings targeting Shia Pilgrims;
  • Bombings in revenge for Iran’s role in supporting al-Assad’s tyrannical rule;
  • Death Toll still unclear;
Scene of the twin bomb blast

The alliance of hardline fighters in Syria known as Tahrir al-Sham which were formerly affiliated with al-Qaeda has said it was responsible for the twin bombings targeting Shia pilgrims in the centre of Damscus which killed at least 40 people.

The group said this in a statement they released. “On Saturday…, a twin attack was carried out by two heroes of Islam… in the centre of the capital Damascus, killing and wounding dozens,” the statement said.

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The group said the attack targeted “Iranian militias” and pro-government fighters in revenge for what it said was Iran’s role in supporting President Bashar al-Assad’s “tyrannical rule”, holding them responsible for “killing and displacing” Syrians.

As of the moment of this report, the death toll from the blasts remained unclear. Syrian state television said 40 people were killed and 120 wounded by “two bombs detonated by terrorists”, while Iraq’s foreign ministry said 40 of its nationals had died.

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The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on the other hand said 76 people, including 43 Iraqi pilgrims, were killed when a roadside bomb detonated as a bus made its way through the Ban al-Saghir area of Damascus’ famed Old City, and then a suicide bomber blew himself up.

The war monitor said 11 bystanders and eight children were killed in the blasts, as well as 20 members of pro-government security forces.

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