9 Dead, 20 Hurt in Bombing of Bus Carrying Lebanese Pilgrims in Damascus

إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية W460

A blast ripped through a bus carrying Lebanese Shiite pilgrims in Damascus on Sunday, killing at least nine people, a monitor said, in an attack claimed by al-Qaida's Syrian branch.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 20 people were wounded in the explosion near Souq al-Hamadiyeh district, and that six of the dead were Lebanese citizens.

In Beirut, the Oshaq al-Hussein pilgrimage agency that organized the trip said all the passengers on the bus were Lebanese, identifying the dead as Mohammed Ahmed Meqdad, Mahdi Youssef Meqdad, Qassem Hatoum, Ali Abbas Ballouq, Shadi Houmani and Mohammed Hassan Ayyoub.

"They set out from Beirut at 5:30 am (0330 GMT) this morning," agency employee Fadi Khaireddin told Agence France-Presse, adding that the bus had space for 52 pilgrims, as well as the driver and trip administrator.

"The bus is usually full," he added, though he could not confirm how many people were on the trip this weekend.

He said the bus had made its first stop at the Sayyida Roqaya shrine and was heading to the revered Sayyida Zeinab shrine in southeast Damascus when the attack occurred.

Khaireddin said the group had been making regular trips throughout the Syrian conflict, with groups leaving each weekend for a day-long visit to shrines revered by Shiite Muslims across the border.

Al-Nusra Front, the affiliate of al-Qaida in war-ravaged Syria, claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement posted online.

Syrian state media, which reported a toll of six dead and 19 wounded, said the blast was caused by an explosive device rather than a suicide bomber.

State news agency SANA said officials had found and defused a second bomb that had been placed inside the bus before it detonated.

Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said the bus had a Lebanese license plate and was carrying Shiite Muslim pilgrims visiting religious sites in Damascus.

Syrian state television showed footage from the scene of the blast, with men in military uniforms picking through the wreckage of the bus.

Its front half was mostly blown off, leaving only the metal frame, and bags of belongings were strewn across the remaining seats.

The channel also showed images from inside a hospital where the wounded were being treated, including a woman whose black robes had been lifted up, revealing a bloodsoaked undershirt.

Meanwhile, Hizbullah, which has sent scores of fighters to aid the Syrian regime against the Islamist-led uprising, issued a statement denouncing the attack.

This "is part of the series of explosions that targets pilgrims in Syria, civilians in Iraq, believers in Pakistan" and "proves the barbarity of the terrorists," it said in a statement.

“Those who carried out the Damascus bombing are serving the interests of the Zionist entity and the scheme seeking to fragment the region,” the party added.

Parts of Damascus have remained relatively unscathed by the fighting raging across much of Syria since an uprising erupted in March 2011.

But rebels regularly fire rockets into the capital from rear bases in the surrounding countryside, and the city has also been hit by bombings.

Despite the conflict, the road from the Lebanese border to Damascus remains relatively safe, and Lebanese Shiite pilgrims have continued to visit religious sites in Syria.

More than 200,000 people have been killed in Syria since the conflict started, and around half of the country's population has been displaced.

Comments 79
Missing greatpierro 01 February 2015, 14:37

why would we gloat when innocent civilians are targeted?

Missing coolmec 01 February 2015, 14:48

there is no reason to gloat when innocent civilians lose their lives. May they RIP

Default-user-icon Visitor (Guest) 01 February 2015, 15:07

southern you are so stupid .

Default-user-icon roukuz (Guest) 01 February 2015, 15:18

May you be resting in pieces and tranquility dear flamethrower.... RIP Shia Hero

Default-user-icon megabemoss (Guest) 01 February 2015, 15:23

well said mega.ado.karim

Thumb kanaandian 01 February 2015, 15:31

who in the right mind goes to syria to begin with?

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 16:20

Through out Lebanon's civil war, people still travelled there. Life still goes on.

Thumb shab 01 February 2015, 19:31

Pilgrims ? What a pity, nobody told them there's a war going on.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 01:35

this is not "war", it is cowardly terrorism and deliberate killing of civilians. the same who did this in damacus did it before in lebanon, it has nothing to do with "where" you are, it can happen anywhere.

Default-user-icon Liban (Guest) 01 February 2015, 15:33

You are an Idiot.
Stop enticing hatefulness and being narrow sighted.
Wake up.Regardless of any political or religious affiliations of those violently murdered Lebanese.
They are innocent people and killed in a barbaric act.
May all RIP.

Default-user-icon Sorry (Guest) 01 February 2015, 15:50

We are the only country that allows its citizens to travel to a WAR Zone. Any decent respectable country would've issues warnings and prevented its citizens from travelling to such places...

Thumb Machia 01 February 2015, 16:03

What a horrible crime! Inhumane!
Extremism is a terrible murderous psychological disease.
May the victims of such a barbarous act rest in peace.

Default-user-icon darwin (Guest) 01 February 2015, 16:09

I am sorry to report that evolution missed your kind completely.

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 16:14

So Israel decides to not escalate on the battlefield, instead they order their proxies in syria to attack innocent Lebanese.

Default-user-icon _mowaten_ (Guest) 01 February 2015, 16:20

Exactly Exactly Exactly! I was thinking the same thing @cityboy, the same!

Default-user-icon serii (Guest) 01 February 2015, 18:22

well boy, how did you know michel samaha's agents were involved in this

Default-user-icon Truth (Guest) 01 February 2015, 16:46

Some more pilgrims adding to the thousands who have flocked to Syria and tied up with the Shabiha and the basij!

Thumb ice-man 01 February 2015, 17:18

How Sad..... This is unacceptable and regrettable. What is it that they did or did not do to deserve such brutal fate! My Sunday is now ruined......

Thumb geha 01 February 2015, 17:29

extremist terrorists from whichever side are just that: extremist terrorists.
they are all one and the same: they kill innocent people.

Missing canadianadam 01 February 2015, 17:39

Iam not m14 or m8, but I have observed a marked difference In the humanity between supporters of each movement on this forum. I am glad to see the humanity. Perhaps the hezbo terrorists can pick some of this up.

Thumb Elemental 01 February 2015, 22:25

Fingers crossed.

Thumb geha 01 February 2015, 17:50

extremist terrorists are extremist terrorists. what is there to expect from them other than the culture of death?

Missing humble 01 February 2015, 18:19

What do you expect from mononeurons? They will never answer you directly.
If you tell them that Ebola is an Iranian army, they will answer that the Zionists are the cause of everything.
If you tell them that Ebola is acting like terrorists, they will answer that Saudi Arabia is financing Al Nusra.
If you tell them that Ebola has stolen the state decision of war or peace, they will answer you that the Army is unable to clean Arsal.
If you tell them that Ebola is doing wrong in Syria, they will answer that they have to fight the Israeli-American Empire.
There is no use to lower your intelligence to their level of incompetence.

Default-user-icon Zorro (Guest) 01 February 2015, 18:43

When it comes to occupation there is no innocent occupiers. All are targeted. Shiite HA's sillyness and crimes in Syria against Syrians should prevent those people (Shia) from touring (!!) in a country theirs occupy and destroy. Or else they shall be considered as occupying forces and treated as such.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 10:50

this "no innocents" sounds very much like zionist mentality: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/1,7340,L-3283720,00.html

but the only "occupiers" in the region are the zionists, shall we apply your philosophy to them?

Default-user-icon Zorro (Guest) 01 February 2015, 18:43

When it comes to occupation there is no innocent occupiers. All are targeted. Shiite HA's sillyness and crimes in Syria against Syrians should prevent those people (Shia) from touring (!!) in a country theirs occupy and destroy. Or else they shall be considered as occupying forces and treated as such.

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 18:55

ever thought of asking what was a saudi national in syria on a suicide bombing adventure. What's the matter, no targets in the land of freedom to hit, saudi arabia. Also why didnt he think about going to israel, oh wait, they probably supplied him with the bomb.

Thumb liberty 01 February 2015, 19:24

oh wait where is mowaten?!

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 21:25

oh wow, you are so smart endlesstexas, that's it, I didnt know saudi arabia had a terror list. That is so formal of them. But a question for you mr smart one, shouldnt that be all the more reason for these saudi freaks to bomb targets inside saudi arabia instead of say sryia, iraq or lebanon

Thumb eagledawn 01 February 2015, 19:29

"that's because he anticipated ...."
But the incredible credible flamethrower said not long ago:

"...flamethrower--
i dont claim to know what's in the heart of people, texasusa. this is a gift that unlike you, i do not have."

Thumb nickjames 01 February 2015, 19:30

"The majority of the travelers hail from southern Lebanon, it added."

Such hilarious reporting. So if they're Lebanese Shiites, and they hail from southern Lebanon, how do we not know they're Hezbollah terrorists? Just like how the Sunni women and children in Halab are all takfiri and subjected to barrel bombs...

Missing bigjohn 01 February 2015, 20:07

You are asking thoughtful questions here? This might offend M14 supporters.

Thumb lubnani.masi7i 01 February 2015, 20:15

half of the bus were Moqdads and of course they are known to be religious.

Missing canadianadam 02 February 2015, 00:09

Wernt the Meqdads forming their own armed militia and kidnapping not that long ago?!

Now they re pilgrims???

Thumb eagledawn 01 February 2015, 19:41

must be trick.portugal !

Thumb ex-fpm 01 February 2015, 19:43

rofl rofl rofl @eagle!!!!!

Missing bigjohn 01 February 2015, 19:47

The West (especially Zionist pandering America), The Wealthy Puppet Gulf tyrant Kings (who robbed the peoples National Resources), and the Zionist Entity have spent trillions of Dollar$ since the 1950's to defeat the Secular Arab Nationalist Ideology in the Arab world. The ONLY Alternative that is "Home Grown" and has popular support are the Sectarian Islamists ranging from Ikhwan to Salafists/Wahabi Takfirists on the Sunni side and the Shiite Islamists. If it was not for money, the illiterate Arab Kings would not have lasted for one day and would have been the laughing stock in the Arab World. Also, ONLY foreign money kept Zionist puppets in power like Mubarak and Antoine Lahd. IMAGINE if the Hariris were not billionaires? Would there have been a "Mustaqbal" party? Would there has been a March 14 who takes orders from the KSA (and other Gulf despots)?

Missing bigjohn 01 February 2015, 19:54

In Lebanon, Sunnis supported Nasser (or Secular Nasserism more than anyone else, and the largest party that had Shiite members (or from Shiite families was the Lebanese Communist party. So this has been the achievement of MONEY in Lebanon and the Arab world!

Thumb marcus 01 February 2015, 19:55

I read your comments and wanted to ask you if you were from planet earth?:) Seriously man!

Thumb nickjames 01 February 2015, 21:47

If Big Qawmi lived in the Middle East, he would be praising the Zionist Arab oil kings, he'd blindly defend them the same way the Shia defend Hezbollah lol.

Thumb Machia 01 February 2015, 20:58

Basically what you are saying bigjohn is that Israel and Oil were a curse to our region.
Well you are correct but we have to get over it, move on and try to build societies that actually work and economies that actually produce and stop wallowing in the past.

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 21:33

american economy is based on making weapons, very little else is produced, the rest of the economy is based on endless borrowing. Real value of property and peoples wealth can easily tumble like a stack of cards. if the zionist were to pull the rug underneath western economies, you will find there is not much there to support the economies.

Thumb barrymore 01 February 2015, 21:57

you should educate yourself before making a statement such as "american economy is based on making weapons, very little else is produced". I am not going to do your homework for you. Oil Production, heavy manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, high tech, car industries; food industries; agricultural manufacturing; civil aviation, etc etc.

Thumb liberty 02 February 2015, 05:20

barrymore

@cityboy aka @_mowaten_ does not need to educate himself. He is paid to distort and lie and make himself look stupid.

Thumb Machia 01 February 2015, 20:59

Basically what you are saying bigjohn is that Israel and Oil were a curse to our region.
Well you are correct but we have to get over it, move on and try to build societies that actually work and economies that actually produce and stop wallowing in the past.

Missing bigjohn 01 February 2015, 19:58

anonymetexasusa....When was the last time a bus or a car bomb was placed in a Sunni neighborhood in Syria???

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 01:38

the mosque bombing in tripoli was done by the same people who did all the other bombings. it was just a way for them to cause anger and facilitate recruitment.
if you think these people care about the lives of anyone, think again.
http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=2ff_1415296478

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:18

The warrants are based on suspicions, they are not a verdict. Furthermore the suspicions against eid were based on a testimony by his driver extracted under torture.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:19

by the way, you sound like an idiot using the word "taqqiah" in the wrong context.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:21

and nice how you ignore the confessions from the tunisian rebel, made freely on a tunisian TV show (which are usualy anti-assad and would not have coerced him to say what he said)

Thumb liberty 02 February 2015, 05:18

"The warrants are based on suspicions, they are not a verdict. "
Then that applies to all warrants issued by the Lebanese authorities coz you cannot simply pick and choose. I am sure you can prove Eid's drivers were tortured and the CCTV that caught them on tape were fabricated. Did they have to wake you up to post their propaganda at 4 in the morning?

Thumb popeye 01 February 2015, 19:58

I await the day when I will read ONE meaningful post, ONE counter argument, ONE credible or mature info from you, ...flamethrower-- , but alas!

Missing bigjohn 01 February 2015, 20:04

min-canada Same thing happened in Iraq many times targeting religious pilgrims going to shrines. You and I would not go, but religious people do. Don't forget, you can be killed anywhere like in Dahiye. Btw, HA fighters would not use a bus KNOWN to carry Shiite pilgrims to travel in Syria.

Missing ArabDemocrat.com 01 February 2015, 20:08

Rip... but seriously who is the idiot who would travel into a war zone knowing full well he is despised by large sectors of the population!!! The organizers should be sued! The government should perform its duties and prevent travel to Syria.

Thumb ParvizAmir 01 February 2015, 20:21

The Islamic Republic of Iran strongly condemns this barbaric act of terrorism against innocent Shia pilgrims performing their religious duties. The Islamic Republic stands by the resistance in Lebanon and stands ready to offer any help whatsoever to the brothers and sisters who were injured. The Republic considers those that perished today as martyrs of the Islamic Republic of Iran and will grant them Iranian citizenship to honor them.

Thumb nickjames 01 February 2015, 21:47

The Islamic Republic of Iran can be extracted from Earth and placed on Mars.

Thumb Machia 01 February 2015, 20:54

Who is this Veritas1? Is it a Mossad or Shabak operation? They used to send text messages to Lebanese mobiles and now they use forums like this one.
Naharnet please block this profile.

Thumb Binar 01 February 2015, 21:13

Who in their right mind go on periglimage in a war torn country?.The inevitable hapenned.

Default-user-icon truly for sure. (Guest) 01 February 2015, 21:45

Sure, pilgrims just like the guy that hezballah exchanged for two nusra captives was an engineer. Anyone who believes this crap call me I got some premium swampland in an earthquake corridor for sale prime location for a highrise first come first served but act fast, limited quantity available. Also available a nice metal tower with a panoramic view and a restaurant located in central Paris for sale by "owner", myself.

Thumb Elemental 01 February 2015, 22:22

Got your ego boost I see today.

Thumb Elemental 01 February 2015, 22:30

Ok let's see: WHY would regular "civilians" from the south enter a warzone?

Thumb cityboy 01 February 2015, 23:29

min-canada, can you give your stupidity a rest.

Thumb megahabib 02 February 2015, 01:26

^And there we have the gloating, just as I predicted.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:23

yea, just as realistic as calling lebanese people "houthis". you're not realistic, you're just lowlife sectarian hater who can't see farther than his hatred

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 01:30

nobody distributed sweets anonyme, you're deliberately lying and making up stories once more to serve your hate agenda.

this is how dahiyeh reacted to the tripoli bombings, quite different from your lies & propaganda.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRYvCXclPWg

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 01:33

what a lowlife you make arabdemocrat, calling the victims "idiots" for travelling to syria.
i take it you also believe the foreign journalists who got beheaded by isis had only themselves to blame?

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 01:42

how is that related? unless like geha you believe in killing innocent civilians to hurt your enemies?

Thumb Elemental 02 February 2015, 03:39

Have you looked in the mirror?

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 10:52

are you trying to say something headbanger?

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:13

This terror attack has nothing to do with the war, it could have happened just the same in beirut or tripoli or anywhere in lebanon, as it happened dozens of times in the last year. How about you stick to denouncing the terrorists instead of trying to twist this in a way to blame the victims?

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:15

See how you completely dodged the fact I gave you that shows you were wrong and lying? A decent person would have admitted being wrong, but you childishly jump to divert to some other rubbish. That is why i always call you a waste of time.

Missing ArabDemocrat.com 02 February 2015, 03:18

Mowaten - What would you call someone traveling into a war zone. As for journalists, this is their job and part of the risk. The problem is that a simpleton like you cannot distinguish between the two. As for a lowlife, you support a genocidal killer !!!! I suspect that makes you even worse than a lowlife.

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 03:28

many areas in damascus are safe, millions of people live there. these people did not get killed in -battle- they got killed by a terror attack that could have happened just the same in lebanon (again, as it did so many times these last years).
as for genocidal maniac, that's empty rhetoric and anti-bashar propaganda. the genocidal maniacs are the likes of nusra, isis, and the hundreds of other groups, united in their hatred of everyone but themselves. bashar is fighting these animals and we're all lucky that he does. doesnt take divination skills to figure out what the area would look like if he had fallen.

Thumb freedomarch 02 February 2015, 04:27

RIP. Nothing is worth to die for. May God give them what they deserve, hopefully Heaven. Wished they new better how dangerous Syria had become. Please no time for sectarian words here.

Thumb freedomarch 02 February 2015, 14:28

Just in case I was not clear, I condem beyond question attacks on civilians let alone Religious and sectarian reasons. No matter what it is beyond believe to see a human being accepting these acts. If you want this to happen to you then keep cheering.

God help their families.

Thumb liberty 02 February 2015, 05:14

mowaten
we are watching the Super Bowl here but what are you doing at 4 in the morning posting?! What a troll

Missing maroun 02 February 2015, 09:34

interesting observation from the article.
State news agency SANA said officials had found and defused a second bomb that had been placed inside the bus before it detonated.

who got to the bus and where? to place the device .

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 10:46

i dont care what you were doing "liberty"

Thumb _mowaten_ 02 February 2015, 10:47

dude, seriously take some pills, your paranoiac delusions are getting out of control.