Blasts rock Syria’s hub of trade, kill 28
BEIRUT - The Associated Press
Destruction at the scene of one of the blasts that hit Aleppo is seen in this photo. AFP photoTwo explosions struck security compounds in the Syrian city of Aleppo on Feb. 10, killing 28 people and wounding 235, state media reported, in a major city that has largely stood by President Bashar al-Assad in the nearly 11-month-old uprising against his rule.
The blasts come as escalating violence between regime forces and an increasingly militarized opposition has raised fears the conflict is spiraling toward civil war. A Syrian offensive aimed at crushing rebels in the battered city of Homs continued Feb. 10, with soldiers who have been bombarding the city for the past six days. State TV blamed “terrorists” for the blasts in Aleppo, the first significant violence in Syria’s second largest city. Anti-Assad activists accused the regime of setting off Feb. 10’s blasts to discredit the opposition and avert protests that had been planned in the northern city Feb. 10.
Outside one of the compounds hit, the Military Intelligence Directorate, a weeping correspondent on state-run TV showed graphic footage of at least five corpses, collected in sacks and under blankets by the side of the road. The presenter said the blast went off near a park and claimed children were among the dead, although none were seen in the TV footage. The second blast went off outside the headquarters of a police force in another part of the city.