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Syria PM Survives Assassination Attempt

He escapes blast in central Damascus
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 29, 2013 4:39 AM CDT
Updated Apr 29, 2013 6:33 AM CDT
Syria PM Survives Assassination Attempt
This photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA shows Syrian firefighters extinguishing burning cars after a car bomb exploded in Damascus today.   (AP Photo/SANA)

(Newser) – Syria's prime minister escaped an assassination attempt today when a bomb went off near his convoy in Damascus in the latest attack targeting a top regime offical, state media reported. Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi was unhurt in the bombing in the capital's western neighborhood of Mazzeh, according to state TV, which showed footage of heavily damaged cars and debris in the area of the blast as firefighters fought a large blaze caused by the explosion.

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The daring attack in the upscale neighborhood, which is home to many embassies and officials, was another blow to the government, exposing its vulnerability in the very seat of Bashar al-Assad's power base. State TV said that al-Halqi went to a regular weekly meeting with an economic committee straight after the bombing and showed him sitting at a table with several other officials, though there are doubts as to whether the footage was filmed before or after the bombing (Read more Wael al-Halqi stories.)

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