Car bombs kill 28 in Syria’s Aleppo


Twin car bombs targeting security posts in Syria’s second city of Aleppo killed at least 28 people, state media said, with the rebels accusing the regime of launching the attacks as a diversion.
The explosions Friday came as tank-backed troops advanced on pockets of resistance in the besieged protest hub of Homs, and as heavy security deployments nationwide thwarted planned protests against regime ally Russia.
The powerful mid-morning blasts in the northern commercial hub also wounded 235 people, said state television, which broadcast gruesome footage.
Mangled bodies were shown in pools of blood outside rows of shattered buildings and piles of rubble strewn across a broad avenue.
State television called the bombings, the first in Aleppo since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime erupted almost a year ago, the work of “armed terrorist gangs.”
It said a “suicide bomber in a car packed with explosives” had attacked a police station, flattening a nearby food distribution centre. The second targeted an intelligence base. The rebel Free Syrian Army blamed the government itself for the attacks.
“This criminal regime is… carrying out bomb attacks in Aleppo to steer attention away from what it is doing in Homs, Zabadani and elsewhere,” its spokesman, Colonel Maher Nouaimi, told AFP in a telephone interview.
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said he “firmly condemns” the bombings in Aleppo.
Ban “extends his sympathy and condolences to the bereaved families of the victims as well as to the government and people of Syria,” a statement from his spokesman read.
“The secretary-general reiterates that all violence is unacceptable and must cease immediately from all sides.”
State television showed emergency workers holding body parts, including hands, feet and a torso. Soldiers were among the casualties, it said.
“The number of casualties from the two car bombs in Aleppo has risen to 28 dead and 235 wounded,” said the health ministry. Among the dead were soldiers and civilians, including children.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 30 people were killed in the Aleppo blasts.