Huge Explosion In Homs Leaves Scores Wounded

Aug 1, 2013

A huge blast hit a weapons depot in the Syrian city of Homs on Thursday. Video of the blast has been posted to YouTube. It shows an explosion, followed by a plume of smoke rising hundreds of feet into the air.

Sky News quotes the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an advocacy group opposed to the regime of Bashar Assad, as saying the explosion killed at least 22 people including civilians.

Sky adds:

"[The Observatory] said that the munitions depot was operated by pro-regime militias.

"The bomb attacks, which caused a significant amount of damage to the neighboring area, appeared significantly larger than most explosives that have been used during the two-year conflict.

"The neighborhood is majority Alawite, the same sect as President Bashar al-Assad. Sunni Muslim insurgents have targeted Alawite areas, especially military positions, around the country with bombs and mortars."

Al Jazeera reports that one activist told the news organization the blasts were the result of rebel shelling.

If you remember Homs has served as the base for rebel forces. The AP explains:

"The explosions in Homs reflected the see-saw nature of the conflict. It showed that despite significant advances by Assad's military, rebels could still strike back.

"An official at the governor's office in Homs said about 10 rockets slammed into the neighborhood of Zahra and the nearby sports stadium, sparking a large fire and causing several casualties. He said the explosions caused massive destruction and wounded at least 130 people. He didn't offer a number for those killed."

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