Iran Election Guide

Donate to EAWV

Or, click to learn more



Syria Live Coverage: At Least 53 Killed by Bombs in Damascus 

See also Egypt (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Parliamentary Elections set for April-June
Thursday's Syria Live Coverage: Multiple Bombings in Damascus

1815 GMT:Attacks in Aleppo. Activists now say that at least 12 people have been killed when three missiles or rockets hit house in eastern Aleppo.

1724 GMT:Attacks in Aleppo. Activists are reporting rockets have struck two eastern districts of Aleppo city on Friday, destroying dozens of houses.

One activist who visited the scene said a rocket fell in Ard al-Hamra neighborhood, causing widespread destruction. "There are families buried under the rubble. Nothing can describe it, it's a horrible sight."

Claims are also circulating that the attacks was by missiles --- possibly SCUDs --- rather than rockets.

The wounded after the attack:

1556 GMT:Kidnapping. Activists say more than 200 people, kidnapped recently by gunmen from rival Sunni and Shiite villages in northern Syria, have been released.

The crisis reportedly started last week when a bus carrying a few dozen Shia, mostly women and children, disappeared. Activists say Shiite gunmen accused rebels, and kidnapped more than 200 residents of nearby Sunni villages in retaliation.

Activist Hamza Abu al-Hassan said Friday that after a swap deal, the Shiites were released early Thursday and most of the Sunnis were freed later the same day.

1542 GMT:Islamist Insurgency. John Horne adds an interesting detail on the Jabhat al-Nusra video, claiming a December 2012 attack on the Ministry of Interior, posted below (see 1352 GMT).

I noticed that there were two occasions where Government people were blacked out (about 2:00 and 2:40 respectively). I first thought that they might have been hidden because they were the targets, or maybe even that they were inside contacts. However, I did some digging and found the original photo for the first incident where three figures are blacked out.

All three are women, and none are covered.

1352 GMT:Islamist Insurgency. Jabhat al-Nusra has released a video in which it provides details of a December 2012 attack on the Ministry of Interior.

[Note: We had initially followed AFP's summary that this footage was on the bombing that killed top Syrian officials last July, including Assef Shawkat, the brother-in-law of President Assad. We have checked, after a prompt from a reader, and confirmed that this is not the case.]

1252 GMT:Humanitarian Crisis Continues. Thousands of displaced civilians forced into camps such as Bab-al-Salam in the north of the country are living in increasingly desperate conditions as supplies run dangerously low.

International aid has struggled to reach northern Syria and the UN refugee agency only managed to access the nearby city of Azaz in recent weeks.

UN estimates suggest that 4 million Syrians need assistance; 2 million of these have been displaced since the beginning of the conflict which has seen at least 70,000 people killed.

Earlier this week Valerie Amos, the UN’s humanitarian chief, put it plainly:

We are watching a humanitarian tragedy unfold before our eyes. We are not reaching enough of those who require our help. Limited access in the north is a problem that can only solved using alternative methods of aid delivery.

1221 GMT: Protest. The message from Kafranbel in Idlib Province today is a rejection of sectarian violence, "Everyone's Blood is Red":

0950 GMT: The Damascus Bomb. Russian Foreign Sergei Lavrov has criticised the US over its response to Thursday's deadly bombing in the capital:

0810 GMT: Political Prisoners. Human Rights Watch claims that activist Omar Aziz, 64, died in Harasta military hospital last week, while news has emerged that Ayham Ghazzoul.26, may have died in a military intelligence building in November.

Aziz had helped local committees deliver aid, according to HRW, before his imprisonment.

0650 GMT: Damascus Bombs. State news agency SANA claims 53 people were killed and 235 injured, some of them critically, by Thursday's car bomb near Baath Party headquarters in the capital.

SANA said the car of another suicide bomber had been intercepted, and the man arrested, before the explosives could be detonated.

There has been no claim of responsibility for the attack. State media blame "terrorists", while the opposition Local Coordination Committees insisted that "the regime in Syria proved that its terrorism has risen beyond imagination and limits".

Later in the day, insurgents fired mortars at an Army headquarters. The building was closed for renovation, and there were no casualties.

The Local Coordination Committees report that, of 210 people killed in Syria on Thursday, 103 were in Damascus and its suburbs. There were 40 killed in Daraa Province and 32 in Aleppo Province.

Among the dead were 19 women and 15 children.

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

« Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Threatened Journalists, Tehran Claims the South Pole, and the End of Olympic Wrestling (Arseh Sevom) | Main | EA Video Analysis: Iran --- 7-Point Beginner's Guide to the Nuclear Talks »

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>