News / Middle East

    Car Bombing Kills Scores in Syrian Capital

    This photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows flames and smoke rising from burned cars after a huge explosion that shook central Damascus,February 21, 2013.
    This photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows flames and smoke rising from burned cars after a huge explosion that shook central Damascus,February 21, 2013.
    VOA NewsEdward Yeranian
    Syrian state media say at least 53 people have been killed and more than 200 wounded in a car bombing near the headquarters of Syria's ruling Ba'ath Party in central Damascus.

    State media called the blast a "terrorist bombing" that struck a densely populated area near the al-Mazraa neighborhood. State television footage showed bloodied and charred bodies lying along the roadside in the aftermath of the attack, which took place near the Russian embassy.
     
    Click to Expand: al-Mazraa neighborhood of Damascus, SyriaClick to Expand: al-Mazraa neighborhood of Damascus, Syria
    x
    Click to Expand: al-Mazraa neighborhood of Damascus, Syria
    Click to Expand: al-Mazraa neighborhood of Damascus, Syria
    Video shows Red Crescent rescue workers picking through the rubble to rescue victims. Commuters at a major bus stop and children at a nearby school were reportedly among those killed and wounded.
     
    A young girl, dressed in a scout's uniform and trembling with fear, said she was thrown from her chair from the force of the blast and found herself on the ground.
     
    Syrian state media reported that a suspect was caught nearby before he could detonate another bomb. It said the man's vehicle was carrying five large water-heaters filled with explosives.
     
    A number of mortar rounds, meanwhile, fell in several parts of the city center.
     
    On Wednesday, Syrian activists said rebels shot down a warplane outside Damascus, shortly after a government airstrike killed at least 20 people in the same area.
     
    Opposition meets
     
    The Syrian opposition met Thursday in Cairo to discuss an initiative to possibly hold peace talks with President Bashar al-Assad's government.
     
    The opposition has offered to talk with regime officials who have "no blood on their hands," under the sponsorship of the United States and Russia. The Assad government has said it is ready to negotiate with the opposition but without pre-conditions.
     
    However, former United Nations peacekeeping spokesman Timor Goksel said both the rebels and the government appear to be feeling more confident militarily and are not ready to negotiate.
     
    "When both sides are confident, then there's a stalemate," Goksel said. "Yes, fighting is going on, but nobody is making any measurable gains, so it is sort of a frozen situation and I don't see why anybody will give up at this time. I don't think the fighting parties are under any pressure to reach a conclusion, yet."
     
    Elsewhere, the opposition Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports that 18 people were killed at a rebel-run medical clinic in southern city of Daraa after an airstrike by government warplanes.

    Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

    You May Like

    Vietnam Mulls Tough Measures for ‘Misbehaving’ Chinese Tourists

    Move comes after footage surfaced online of Chinese travelers harassing a banana hawker in Da Nang

    Pakistan Social Media Star's Honor Killing Fuels Debate

    Qandeel Baloch's murder puts spotlight on deadly tradition and other mistreatment of women

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Michael from: USA
    February 21, 2013 9:58 AM
    Civilian death, a draw on the closed version of universal asymmetries as a result of the Semitic mindset having to do with the chosen as a result from a divorce from kindness, concern, and giving God a good name

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Borderi
    X
    July 22, 2016 12:30 AM
    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.
    Video

    Video Number of Syrian Refugees Arriving in US Jumps

    The United States is committed to resettling 85,000 refugees from around the world by October. Of that number, 10,000 will come from Syria and already some 4,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in the United States, many of them settling in the state of Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports from Chicago, their arrival is not the end of a difficult journey to find peace and stability.
    Video

    Video Rio’s Trams Await Olympic Tourists

    Over the past century, many cities around the world replaced electric trams, prone to breakdowns and backups, with faster and more spacious buses. But for some reason restored antique trams are a huge tourist attraction. So it’s no wonder the authorities in Rio de Janeiro are busy restoring their city’s old tram line ahead of the Summer Olympic Games. VOA’ George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora