A top Syrian intelligence chief was among dozens killed in suicide attacks by Al Qaeda’s former branch in Syria in the government-held city of Homs on Saturday.
Gen Hassan Daabul, also a close confidant of president Bashar Al Assad, was among the dead after the attacks that threaten UN efforts for peace talks in Geneva.
The attack was claimed by Jabhat Fatah Al Sham, which remains blacklisted as a terrorist group by the UN and Western governments despite renouncing links with Al Qaeda last year. Like its extremist rival ISIS, Fatah Al Sham is not party to a ceasefire between government forces and rebel groups taking part in the Geneva talks.
Security forces locked down the city centre after the bombings.