Explosion in south Syria kills six soldiers: monitor

More than 370,000 were killed in the Syrian civil war, since it broke out in 2011. (File/AFP)
Updated 17 July 2019

Explosion in south Syria kills six soldiers: monitor

  • The attack also wounded 15 persons
  • Nobody has claimed the attack yet

BEIRUT: A blast killed six soldiers in southern Syria Wednesday in a rare such deadly attack in the defeated cradle of the eight-year uprising, a war monitor said.
“The explosive device was aimed at a convoy transporting members of the Fourth Division” in the southern province of Daraa, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
Fifteen others were also wounded in the attack near Yadud village, some seven kilometers outside the provincial capital of Daraa city, the Britain-based monitor said.
It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast, but loyalists in the province face explosions and gunfire on a near daily basis, although they are usually not deadly, it said.
“Previous rebel fighters who call themselves the Popular Resistance usually carry out these types of attacks against the regime,” Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said.
State news agency SANA said “terrorists targeted a military vehicle on the Yaduda road,” reporting an undefined number of “dead and wounded.”
Russia-backed government forces last summer retook the province, following a deadly bombardment campaign and surrender deals that saw part of the population board buses to an opposition holdout region in the northwest.
Government institutions have since returned, but army forces have not deployed in all of the province.
And local anger has grown after hundreds were detained despite the so-called “reconciliation deals,” and many others forcibly conscripted into President Bashar Assad’s army.
In March, dozens of people took part in a hasty protest against a statue of the late father of the president being reinstated eight years after protesters demolished it.
The civil war has killed more than 370,000 people since it started with anti-government protests in Damascus and Daraa in March 2011, before their brutal repression triggered conflict.


Iranian tanker no longer has Turkey destination

Updated 31 min 42 sec ago

Iranian tanker no longer has Turkey destination

  • The tanker was previously heading to Greece’s Kalamata
  • It was supposed to dock at Turkey’s Mersin port

ISTANBUL: An Iranian tanker at the center of a confrontation between Washington and Tehran is no longer recorded as heading for Turkey, Refinitiv Eikon shipping data showed on Monday, having switched to a Turkish destination at the weekend.
The vessel, fully laden with oil, had previously been heading to the port of Kalamata in southern Greece but Greece had said it would not offer any facilities to the tanker.
Shipping data on Saturday had then indicated the vessel was to dock at the southern Turkish port of Mersin on Aug. 31.
On Monday, Refinitiv Eikon data did not specify any destination for the Adrian Darya. Its location is currently south of mainland Greece, west of the island of Crete.
The Adrian Darya, formerly called Grace 1, was released in mid-August from detention off Gibraltar after a five-week standoff over whether it was carrying Iranian oil to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions.
The United States, which says the tanker is controlled by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, deemed a terrorist group by Washington, has told countries in the region not to assist it.