DAMASCUS, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- A spate of blasts rocked Syrian capital Damascus and the southern province of Daraa on Wednesday, leaving at least 58 people killed and more than 150 injured, in a series of violence that has intensified lately coupled with the Syrian army's pitched battles against the armed rebels.
Wednesday started with quaternary blasts that rocked several parts of Damascus' suburb of Jaramana and left at least 56 people killed, according to reports.
The blasts were caused by two booby-trapped cars and two explosive devices that went off in a swift succession in different areas of Jaramana and left scenes of carnage and destruction.
"Look at this huge destruction and these scenes. We have removed the dead bodies and scraps of flesh with our hands and handed them over to the Red Crescent," Abdul-Baset Ramadan, a witness, told Xinhua at the site of the blast.
"Is this the freedom they want? What is the guilt of children and (civilian) people?" Ramadan asked.
Jaramana, a suburb dominated by Christians and Druze, has witnessed a series of explosions over the past several months, suggesting the evolving sectarian rivalries in the country, which has been engulfed by a 20-month bloody crisis.
Just hours after the deadly blasts in Jaramana, a car bomb ripped through the town of Busra in the suburbs of Daraa province, killing two people and injuring many of others.
Also on Wednesday, the state TV said eight "terrorists" were killed while a booby-trapped car in Damascus' suburb of Hajjira.
Another car bomb blast was thwarted in Damascus' suburb of Qudsaia at al-Wurud district, which is dominated by people from the Alawit minority, to which Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the ruling elites belong.
Russia condemned Wednesday's deadly blasts as "inhumane." "We resolutely condemn these new evil acts of terrorists, which could have no justification," the Russian foreign ministry said in an online statement.
"Inhuman acts of this kind are traditional methods of international terrorist organizations such as al-Qaida. Their purpose is to undermine any efforts to stabilize the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic and settle the crisis by nonviolent political means," said the statement.
The intensification of blasts came as the Syrian army was closing in on the entrenched rebels and rendering many of them killed or injured in Damascus' suburb of Daraya, according to local reports.
The Syrian government has said the army is fighting thousands of al-Qaida fighters in several areas nationwide.
Earlier in the day, the pro-government al-Watan daily said the Syrian army is progressing in the southern suburbs of Damascus, the Kafar Souseh orchards and Daraya, where ferocious battles have been raging on for days.
The paper estimated that the army will finish its pitched battles against the rebels in Daraya within 48 hours. The army has also succeeded to cut off the supply lines of the rebels in the northwestern province of Idlib, another hotspot on the borders with Turkey.
The Britain-based opposition network Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the governor of Daraya has been kidnapped by rebels, posting an online video showing Brigadier Mustafa Maiouf flanked with men in masks declaring his kidnapping.
The observatory posted another video claiming to show a kidnapped colonel who was identified as Sanad Mussa, also with a company of masked men declaring his abduction.
The observatory also reported clashes and shelling by government troops on several focal points nationwide, and placed the death toll of Wednesday's violence at 135, including 83 civilians, while the rest split between government troops and rebel fighters.
The opposition's accounts could not be checked independently.
"The secretary-general condemns in the strongest possible terms the terrorist bombings in Damascus this morning which have left dozens killed and injured," said a statement issued here by Ban's spokesperson. Full story