A bomb has exploded in the Syrian capital Damascus, near the Dama Rose hotel used by UN observers in a heavily fortified zone of the city.
The bomb appears to have been planted in a fuel tanker. The rebel Syrian Free Army says the attack was targeting a meeting of the government’s army chiefs due to take place at a neighbouring military compound.
The Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister, Faisal Mekdad, said: “Since the beginning our main aim has been the security of the UN mission and thank God none of them has been injured while they have been in Syria.”
Three people were reported injured in the blast which appears to have damaged nearby cars and buildings, starting several fires.
Last month three of President Assad’s security chiefs were killed by a bomb at the national security headquarters.