|Photo taken on Sept. 26, 2012 shows broken window glass in a building after the twin blasts near the Syrian army command in the capital of Damascus. No casualties were reported in the twin blasts that rocked the Syrian army command in Damascus earlier Wednesday, which had caused material damages only, Minister of Information Omran al-Zoubi told state TV. (Xinhua/Hazim)
DAMASCUS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) - No casualties were reported in the twin blasts that rocked the Syrian army command in the capital of Damascus earlier Wednesday, which had caused material damages only, Minister of Information Omran al-Zoubi told state TV.
The blasts were caused by two explosive devices, he added, denying media reports that many army officers were killed, saying that "all the military chiefs are fine."
He said the Syrian security forces are tracking down the assailants in the surroundings of the blast site, adding that footages and live coverage of the site will be available once the security situation is stabilized.
The twin blasts occurred in a swift succession at around 6:45 a.m. local time (0345 GMT) and targeted the Syrian army's chiefs of staffs' complex from two sides at the Umayyad square in the heart of Damascus, in which the state-TV establishment is also located.
Amateur footages appeared online purporting to show the smoldering fire at one side of the military command building, on which a plume of smoke spiraled in the sky.
Al-Zoubi said all the state TV's staffers are also fine, adding that the blast adds to the failure of the armed groups "after failing to achieve their goals."
Still, the blast is another blow to the government of President Bashar al-Assad after a major blast targeting the National Security Department in July killed four top military officials, including then Defense Minister Dawood Rajha.
Two blasts rock Chief of Staff building in Damascus: state TV
DAMASCUS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Two "terrorist" explosions hit near the army's Chief of Staff headquarters in the center of the Syrian capital, the state TV said, giving no further details on causalities.
The blasts were followed by intense gunfire, witnesses said, adding that a fire was still smoldering from the army building and sending a plume of smoke over the Umayyad Square. Full story
UN chief calls for end to violence, arms flows to both sides in Syria
UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday called for efforts to end the violence and flows of arms to both sides in the Syria crisis and launch a Syrian-led transition in the Middle East country at an early date.
The UN chief made the remarks while speaking at the general debate of the 67th session of the UN General Assembly, a week-long event that opened here on Tuesday morning. Full story