Syria conflict: IS claims wave of bombings that kills dozens

Source: BBC

At least 40 people have been killed in bombings in mainly government-held areas of Syria, state media report.

Four attacks took place within an hour in Tartous, Homs and in a suburb of Damascus, with one in Hassakeh, which is dominated by Kurdish forces.

The deadliest incident was outside Tartous, home to a Russian naval base and in the heartland of President Bashar al-Assad’s Alawite sect.

The Islamic State (IS) group said it was behind the attacks.

The group made the claim in a statement carried by its affiliated news agency, Amaq.

‘Crowd targeted’

The attacks took place between 08:00 and 09:00 (05:00-06:00 GMT) on Monday.

Syria’s official Sana news agency reported that 30 civilians had been killed and 45 others injured in the Tartous countryside.

Map of Syria

First, a car bomb was detonated on the Arzoneh motorway bridge, a local police source told Sana.

Then, as a crowd gathered at the scene to help the wounded, a suicide bomber detonated his explosive belt, the source added.

Tartous had been relatively unscathed by Syria’s five-year civil war until May, when a suicide bomb attack on a bus station by IS militants left dozens dead.

In the central city of Homs, four people were killed and 10 injured when a car bomb exploded at the entrance to the Bab Tadmour district, Sana reported.

Damaged buildings in Bab Tadmour district of Homs after bomb blast (5 September 2016)Image copyrightEPA
Image captionThe bomb in Homs targeted a military checkpoint, according to the provincial governor

The governor of Homs province said the car bomb targeted a military checkpoint and that the casualties were soldiers.

One person was killed in a bombing on a road in Saboura, a heavily-guarded western suburb of Damascus, a police source told Sana.

Opposition activist Yousef al-Boustani said the area was home to security officers and their families and that the attack represented a major security breach.

In Hassakeh, an explosives-packed motorcycle was blown up at the Marsho roundabout, killing five civilians and injuring two others, Sana said.

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