02/11/2012, 00.00
SYRIA
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Rebels claim and then deny responsibility for Aleppo attacks

At least 28 killed and 240 wounded in explosion of two car bombs at two military sites. Civilians among the victims. For the experts, the attack is a sign of the training that Free Syrian Army receives from abroad.

 Aleppo (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The explosion of two car bombs in front of two security bases in Aleppo, has killed at least 28 people, including soldiers and civilians and injuring another 240. The Free Syrian Army, a group of military deserters, with overseas bases, opposed to the Assad regime, first claimed the attacks, then assigned them to the same government in Damascus.

Aleppo, the country's second city and commercial hub, until now had remained on the margins of the bloody clashes that have wrecked Syria for 11 months, although in recent weeks the tension has mounted considerably.

The violent attack was documented by state television, which showed in detail horrifically damaged, blood and craters generated by the explosions, several meters deep. And the government has attributed the attacks to "armed gangs of terrorists."

Those of Aleppo are just the latest in a series of terrorist explosions, involving military and civilian death. On January 6th in Damascus, a suicide attack killed 26 people, two weeks earlier, a double explosion killed 44.

Until now, the Free Syrian Army, (FSA), the organization opposed to the military regime, consisting of deserters, has always accused Assad of using violence as a deterrent, describing them as "terrorists". Instead yesterday, after two attacks in Aleppo, in an interview with France 24, Colonel Aref Hammoud claimed that the attacks had come from them. Only in the evening, the supreme head of the FSA, Col. Riad al-Asaad said that his army was not responsible for two attacks. According to al-Asaad there is some confusion: the FSA attacked the two places in Aleppo, but left the area shortly before the explosion, which instead is attributed to the government in an attempt to defeat the FSA.

Obeida Nahas, spokesman for the Syrian National Council, a sort of provisional government, based in Istanbul, has also come out in support of the presumed FSA innocence stating that it "does not fall within the remit of the FSA to attack government institutions."

Analysts instead claim the Aleppo attacks are the work of FSA soldiers or individuals associated with them, not excluding even members of al Qaeda. Such attacks - that require preparation, careful control, planning, execution, etc. .. - Show that the FSA is receiving military support and training from foreign military personalities. The goals of the FSA is to step up the level of confrontation with Damascus, to create a humanitarian crisis to ptovoke foreign military intervention, one of the dreams of the FSA and some European countries.

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