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Suicide bombing in Damascus Christian area kills 4

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

A suicide bomb attack in a Christian area in the heart of the Syrian capital on Thursday killed at least four people, state television said.

"A terrorist suicide bombing... in Damascus has left four people dead and several others wounded," the broadcaster said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the toll.

"A suicide bomber detonated his explosives near the Mariamite church," said the Britain-based watchdog, referring to an order of the Maronite church.

"According to preliminary reports, four people were killed and several others wounded," it added.

Residents told AFP the police blocked off the road linking the two historical neighbourhoods of Bab Tuma and Bab Sharqi, where the bombing took place.

An AFP journalist at the scene saw a corpse stretched out on the pavement.

At least two shops were damaged by the blast, said the correspondent, adding that firefighters, security forces and soldiers were all deployed in the area.

Official television channel Al-Ikhbariya broadcast footage of the body of a man in a white T-shirt, saying it was the remains of the suicide bomber.

It also showed body parts strewn across the area.

On October 12, 13 people were killed in an attack in front of a police station in Bab Tuma.

In addition, the Observatory on Thursday reported shelling in nearby Al-Amin Street, also in old Damascus, without elaborating.

rm-ser/srm

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130627/suicide-bombing-damascus-christian-area-kills-4-0