6 killed in Syria blast

A bomb killed six people and wounded scores on Thursday when it exploded near the Sayeda Zeinab mausoleum in Damascus, Syria’s most visited Shiite pilgrimage site, the authorities said.

The deadly blast south of the capital came ahead of the annual commemoration of Ashura, when Shiites remember the death of the Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Mohammed, in a seventh century battle.

The interior ministry gave a death toll of six, state news agency SANA reported, revising an earlier death toll of five.

More than 20 people were wounded in the attack which the interior ministry said was caused when a motorcycle exploded near a taxi, calling it a “terrorist bombing”.

Health Minister Hassan al-Ghobash visited the wounded in hospital, the ministry said.

A source at the nearby Al-Sadr hospital told AFP earlier that the facility had received 10 wounded after a car bombing near the shrine.

State television reported that the explosion was caused by a “bomb placed in a taxi by unidentified people”.

“We heard a huge blast and people began to run,” 39-year-old civil servant Ibrahim told AFP.

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