Several top officials of the al-Qaeda-linked group have either defected or have been killed in recent months
Several top officials of the al-Qaeda-linked group have either defected or have been killed in recent months

The al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front claimed responsibility on Sunday for the deadly bombings that rocked the Syrian capital Damascus a day earlier and claimed the lives of 74 people.

The announcement came a day after another rebel group called the Levant Swords said in a statement that the deadly bombings were its doing.

The rebels claim that the Shiite Iraqis were not pilgrims to shrines in Damascus, but fighters supporting the Syrian government forces against the six-year-old rebellion.

On Saturday, two bombings were carried out in swift succession near a cemetery in the Shaghour area in the old part of Damascus.

The first explosion was carried out through an explosive device that went off near a gathering of buses carrying Shiite Iraqi visitors to the Bab al-Saghir cemetery to visit Shiite shrines, as part of Shiite pilgrim practices.

After the first explosion, passengers from nine buses gathered to see what had happened, when a suicide bomber wearing a bomb vest detonated himself among the crowds, killing 74 of them and wounding nearly 100 others, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh

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