At least 42 people, most of them civilians, have been killed in a powerful car bomb targeting the ruling Baath Party headquarters in central Damascus on Thursday, state media and activists say.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a UK-based anti-government rights group, said the attack took place in the central Mazraa neighbourhood on Thursday, and left at least 42, including nine members of government forces and many civilians, dead. It said that dozens of the wounded were in critical condition.
Syrian state television reported that at least 53 people had been killed and 237 injured. It described the bombing as as a "terrorist attack". Syria's main opposition group, the National Coalition, also denounced those responsible as "terrorists", saying that the opposition was not responsible for the bombing.
Al Jazeera's Rula Amin reports from Beirut, in neighbouring Lebanon.