DAMASCUS, February 21 (RIA Novosti) - A Syrian bomb squad on Thursday defused a car bomb in central Damascus that was supposed to have been detonated next to the scene of a powerful explosion that killed at least 40 people earlier in the day, an eyewitness told a RIA Novosti correspondent.
The eyewitness said he had spotted a parked minibus not far from the scene with a man sitting behind the wheel and ran to help him.
“As an ordinary Syrian I rushed to help and pulled the driver out. He was wearing a suicide belt,” the witness said.
Security officers detained the purported terrorist and bomb disposal experts removed about one ton of explosives from the bus.
A representative of Syrian security agencies confirmed this report to RIA Novosti, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Syrian state television said at least 53 people were killed and 237 injured when a car exploded at a checkpoint between the Russian Embassy and the central headquarters of the ruling Baath party.
Syria's main opposition group, the National Coalition, said it was not responsible for the attack.
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News that Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin would resign in order to run for the mayoral election in September came as quite a shock. Sobyanin’s political potential is fairly dubious, not to mention his approval ratings. He has not finished many of the projects he initiated and the electoral effect from these projects is expected to come a bit later than September 2013. Sobyanin’s opponents were not entirely unprepared for this blitzkrieg.