DAMASCUS, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Eight people were killed Wednesday when an explosive device went off at a crowded area in the heart of the Syrian capital of Damascus, the state-run SANA news agency reported.
The device exploded at the time-honored al-Hijas Square in downtown Damascus Wednesday, the report said, spelling no further details.
Explosive devices explosions and mortar attacks have become daily occurrences in Damascus. The Syrian authorities blame the rebels in the countryside of the capital of being behind such indiscriminate attacks.
In a separate attack Wednesday, SANA said four elementary school children were injured by the shrapnel of a mortar attack launched by "terrorists" against a school in the al-Zahara'a district in Damascus. It said the attack left also property losses.
Syrian peace talks stalled as opposition groups split
BEIJING, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- The tripartite meeting of the UN, Russia and the United States failed to set a date for the long-delayed Syria peace talks in Geneva, UN-Arab League Joint Special Representative for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, said Tuesday.
"We were hoping that we would be in a position to announce a date today. Unfortunately, we have not," he told a press conference. Full story
Opposition division delays Geneva II peace conference on Syria
DAMASCUS, Nov.5 (Xinhua) -- While Damascus said it was ready to embark on negotiations with the opposition in the proposed peace conference in Geneva, the Western-backed opposition was still divided over its participation.
The role of President Bashar al-Assad in a transitional period in Syria is still the problematic issue for the exiled Syrian National Coalition (SNC), pushing it to say that it won't attend the Geneva II peace conference unless there's a strict timetable for Assad to leave power. Full story
Geneva II preparatory meeting to push peace talks on Syria
GENEVA, Nov. 4 (Xinhua) -- UN-Arab League joint special envoy Lakhdar Brahimi is expected to meet diplomats Tuesday to pave the way toward setting a date for the peace talks on Syria, known as the Geneva II conference, in November.
U.S. White House spokesman Jay Carney confirmed on Monday that Brahimi is scheduled to have a trilateral meeting with U.S. and Russian diplomats on Tuesday. Full story