Syrian general, 8 soldiers killed in tunnel blast outside Damascus

Baku, January 18, AZERTAC

A Syrian general and eight other soldiers were killed late Tuesday in a tunnel bomb outside Damascus, a monitoring group said, according to The International News.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said rebel fighters planted explosives in a tunnel in the town of Harasta, northeast of Damascus.

"The explosion killed a Syrian officer at the rank of general, and eight other members of regime forces, and wounded several people," Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman said.

The blast hit Harasta´s department of motor vehicles, where the group had been meeting.

But government forces have made a major push in the area in recent weeks, despite a nationwide ceasefire in force since December 30.

In late December, Turkey and Russia brokered a truce deal that initially saw a decrease in violence in Syria.

But fighting has escalated in recent weeks across the country, including around Damascus and further north in the province of Aleppo.

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