Conflict & Justice

Damascus car bomb kills Syrian judge


Demonstrators raise their arms as Syrian opposition flags are seen during a protest against Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus July 16, 2012.

A car bomb killed Judge Abad Nadhwah in Damascus on Wednesday, the second assassination in two days targeting high-ranking supporters of President Bashar al-Assad.

State-run news agency SANA said a "terrorist group" (how Assad's government often refers to opposition fighters) was responsible for planting the explosives under Nadhwah's car, which was parked in front of his house, according to the Associated Press. The bomb was detonated remotely, killing the judge instantly.

The blast came just hours after four mortar shells hit the Damascus district of al-Mazzeh 86, leaving material damages and many injuries, reported NZWeek. Pro-government media said they came from the nearby Kafar-Suseh orchard, which has become a stronghold for armed militias. The Mazzeh 86 region is dominated by Alawite people, the minority to which Assad and the ruling elite belong.

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Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halki on Wednesday visited the blast site in al-Mazzeh and promised the restoration process will start soon.

"The terrorists' crimes will not dissuade us from our stances and this battle is drawing to a close," he said, noted NZWeek.

According to The Voice of Russia, at least 16 people also died Tuesday in a spate of attacks in Damascus. The Syrian capital has seen an upswing in violence this week.