Car bomb kills at least 22 in southern Syria

August 15, 2014 - 1:05 PM

BEIRUT (AP) — A car bomb exploded outside a mosque in an opposition-held town in southern Syria on Friday, killing at least 22 people, activists said.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the blast took place around the time of Friday prayers in the town of Namar in Daraa province.

It said at least two children and several rebels were among those killed, while at least 30 people were wounded.

Observatory director Rami Abdurrahman said it is not clear who was behind the bombing. The monitoring group relies on a network of activists inside Syria.

In northern Syria, fighters from the Islamic State group seized control Friday of the village of Beden in Aleppo province, the Observatory reported.

The capture of Beden comes two days after the extremist group captured two towns and several villages near Syria's border with Turkey. The group has overrun much of northern and western Iraq as well, and has declared the establishment of a self-styled Islamic state.

The Islamic State group's advances in Aleppo province have squeezed Syria's mainstream rebel factions, who are fighting both the extremist group as well as forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad.