At least 18 dead in trio of auto bombings in Damascus

Multiple blasts, mortar rounds hit Damascus
Several dead after suicide bomb rocks central Damascus
Author

03 July, 2017

On March 11, a twin bomb attack targeting mainly Iraqi Shiite pilgrims in Damascus killed 40 Iraqis, and injured another 120 people. The Syrian working week runs from Sunday to Thursday.

Syria's Interior Ministry says security forces tracked three cars loaded with explosives as they headed toward central Damascus on Sunday. The third made it into the city center, where the driver blew himself up near Tahreer Square.

In Syria, 18 people were killed in a suicide auto bombing in eastern Damascus on Sunday.

The Syrian Minister of Local Administration, Hussein Makhlouf, hailed the security response as a "major success", according to the Associated Press.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the death toll of all three of Sunday's auto bombings at 21, including the drivers and seven members of the regime forces and their allies.

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Iraqi military says it has retaken two Mosul neighbourhoods from Islamic State
ISIS militants blew up the al-Nuri Mosque last week where the ISIS leader declared his so-called caliphate about three years ago. The group has carried out sporadic suicide bombings in parts of Mosul using sleeper cells.

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State TV said the attackers had planned to bomb crowded areas in the capital on the first working day after the holy month of Ramadan.

Two other vehicle bombs were safely detonated by security forces.

Damascus is rarely hit by attacks.

The Syrian interior ministry stated that they were able to intercept and explode two vehicle bombs Sunday morning in Damascus. Security forces pursued and destroyed the other two.

President Bashar al-Assad's government has recently solidified its control over Syria's main cities in the country's six-year civil war, which observers said has displaced more than half of the country's pre-war population of 22 million.


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