EU's Ashton condemns Damascus blast, urges political solution

European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton on Friday condemned a horrific bomb blast in the Syrian capital that the UN envoy said left around 100 people dead.

"Nothing can justify an act of such brutality that killed so many people, mostly civilians including children," Ashton said in a statement.

She reiterated the EU's standing condemnation of "any attacks and other forms of violence that affect the civilian population".

Ashton added: "A credible political process must end this terrible bloodshed."

Earlier, international peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, also condemning the Thursday blast in downtown Damascus, said it had left about 100 people dead.

That was a far higher toll than the 61 dead given by Syrian activists after a suicide bomber staged the attack near the entrance to President Bashar al-Assad's ruling party offices.

Brahimi said he "strongly condemns the savage and horrible explosion in Damascus yesterday, which resulted in the killing of around 100 and the injuring of two hundred fifty civilians.

"Nothing could justify such horrible actions that amount to war crimes under international law," the UN-Arab League envoy added in a statement.