19 killed in bus bomb attack in central Syria

At least 19 people have been killed after a roadside bomb struck a bus in central Syria, local officials say.

The blast took place on Thursday in the village of Jbourin in Homs province, an official from the provincial governor’s office said, adding that four people were also injured in the incident.

The villagers there are predominantly members of the minority Alawite sect, which is an offshoot of Shia Islam, to which Syrian President Bashar al-Assad belongs.

Elsewhere in the Arab country, al-Qaeda-affiliated militants seized a town near the Turkish border after heavy clashes with another foreign-backed militant group that had held the area.

Infighting has also been reported among militant groups in the eastern province of Deir al-Zour, near Iraqi border.

On Wednesday, members of the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) attacked the Azaz town in Aleppo, forcing foreign-backed militants to pull out.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies — especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.

British defense consultancy IHS Jane’s estimates that some 10,000 militants out of a total of about 100,000, with many being foreign nationals, are fighting for groups affiliated with al-Qaeda such as the al-Nusra Front and the rest fight for different militant groups.

According to the UN, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the turmoil in Syria.

By Press TV


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