At least 11 people have been killed and 40 injured after a car blast ripped through a gas station near a hospital in Damascus' Barzeh al-Balad district. The number of casualties is likely to rise as many of the injured are in critical condition.
The blast took place near Hamish Hospital at the Qassioun Petrol station, which was packed with people waiting in line for fuel, Syrian state news agency SANA reports.
Local al-Ikhbariya TV has broadcast footage showing at least ten burnt bodies and Red Cross medics working at the scene.
A local told Reuters that he saw ambulances loading burnt bodies and wounded people with severe burns.
“The station is usually packed even when it has no fuel,” the resident said, as cited by Reuters. “There are lots of people who sleep there overnight, waiting for early morning fuel consignments.”
The explosion was caused by a “a booby-trapped car,” according to a statement by the opposition Revolution Leadership Council in Damascus. SANA confirms it was a terrorist attack.
So far no one has claimed responsibility.
The tragedy comes just a day after a blast at another packed Damascus gas station killed at least 30 people. Graphic videos posted to YouTube show a large number of bodies either burnt or dismembered. Activists claimed that fighter jets had bombarded the area as a fuel truck arrived and crowds packed the station. There has been no official government comment on the incident.