Dozens Dead as Blasts Rock Turkish Town Near Syria

Turkey suspects Bashar al-Assad is behind twin car bombs

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted May 11, 2013 11:02 AM CDT

(Newser) – Two car bombs exploded in a Turkish town near the border with Syria today, killing around 40 people and wounding 100 others, officials said. Turkey's deputy prime minister said Syria's intelligence and military were "the usual suspects" behind the bombings, but said authorities were still investigating. The blasts, which were 15 minutes apart, raised fears that Syria's brutal civil war violence was crossing into its neighbor.

One of the car bombs exploded outside city hall while the other went off outside the post office in the town of Reyhanli, a main hub for Syrian refugees and rebel activity in Turkey's Hatay province, just across the border. "We know that the Syrian refugees have become a target of the Syrian regime," said Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc. "Reyhanli was not chosen by coincidence." Syria shares a more than 500-mile border with Turkey, which has been a crucial supporter of the Syrian rebel cause. Ankara has allowed its territory to be used as a logistics base and staging center for insurgents.

People gather at the site of one of the blasts in Reyhanli, near Turkey's border with Syria, Saturday.   ((AP Photo/IHA) TURKEY OUT)
  (F. Duckett)
People gather at the site of one of the blasts in Reyhanli, near Turkey's border with Syria, Saturday.   ((AP Photo/IHA) TURKEY OUT)
A woman cries at the scene of one of the explosions.   (Cem Genco)
People carry injured people from one of the explosion sites.   (Cem Genco)
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