Wednesday’s bombing is the worst in Damascus since March 2017
The bus, carrying army personnel, was hit as it drove under the Jisr al-Rais bridge during rush hour, with two explosive devices attached. A third explosive device was defused by military engineers, Sana news agency reported. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.
“I was sleeping when I heard a strong explosion. I woke up and saw a bus on fire, which came to a halt after hitting the sidewalk,” Abu Ahmed, a fruitseller at a market near the bridge, told AFP news agency. “I later heard the sound of a second explosion, but this one was not as strong as the first one.”
Video from the scene showed the charred remains of the bus as firefighters put out the flames.
Wednesday’s bombing is the deadliest in the city since March 2017, quando 31 people were killed in a suicide attack that was claimed by the jihadist group Islamic State (IS).
Shortly after the attack, army shellfire reportedly killed at least 10 people in the opposition-held northwest. Four children and a woman were among those killed in the town of Ariha, de acordo com Síria Civil Defence.
Outro 20 people were wounded when shells struck residential areas and a busy market as children were going to school, the organisation confirmed.
“We woke up to the bombardment. The children were terrified and were screaming,” Bilal Trissi, a father-of-two who lives in Ariha, told AFP. “We didn’t know what to do or where to go and we didn’t see anything because of all the dust around us.”
A decade of conflict in Syria has killed at least 350,000, destabilised the country and caused millions to flee their homes.