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Suicide bombing targets Syria's state

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-10-14 10:26

DAMASCUS - Two suicide car bombers detonated booby-trapped cars near the Syria's state-TV headquarters on Sunday evening in Damascus, causing property damage and interrupting the broadcast of a channel, the Syrian State News Agency reported.

The cars were detonated 20 meters away from a traffic light adjacent to the left fence of the headquarters, Syrian State Television said, adding that some passersby were wounded. A dead body, which officials believe belong to one of the two bombers, was found at the blast spot.

Syrian State Television also ran brief video footage of the blast's aftermath, showing the damage that occurred in Umayyad Square, the heart of Damascus and the Syrian military's headquarters.

A newscaster for the state-TV said in an off-camera commentary that the losses were all material, adding that al-Ekhbaria TV, which was interrupted, continued to broadcast on a back-up frequency.

Last year, an explosive device ripped through the third floor of the state-TV headquarters, killing a number of employees. The device was reportedly planted by one of the workers who was working with rebel factions.

Also last year, the old office of al-Ekhbaria, which was based outside Damascus, was completely destroyed by rebels, prompting its management to relocate inside the main state television headquarters.

Attacks against the state media extend to assaults on state journalists and cameramen, some of whom have been kidnapped or killed.

The attack on Sunday occurred hours after the Free Syrian Army (FSA), armed groups against President Bashar al-Assad's government, said they would barrage the capital of Damascus with mortars if Syrian government troops continue to impose a siege on rebel-held areas.

The attack is just one in a series of mortar attacks that have targeted several parts of Damascus in the last few days, which killed at least two people while leaving scores of people wounded.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights alleged that 11 civilians, including three children and four women, were killed Sunday by government troops' bombardment of the southern province of Daraa.

The escalating conflict between rebels and government troops continues unabated amidst international efforts to hold a conference in Geneva by mid-November addressing the Syria crisis.

Clashes and bouts of violence continue even as international chemical experts conduct their mission in Syria to oversee the destruction of the country's chemical arsenal.

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