Ammunition depot explodes in Syrian capital: state media

Damascus (AFP) –


An ammunition depot in Damascus exploded Saturday, state media reported, prompting a blast heard by an AFP journalist in the Syrian capital.

"An ammunition depot for the Syrian army in western Damascus exploded after a fire in nearby fields started spreading," state news agency SANA said, citing a military source.

The ammunition depot was located in a military zone in Mashrou Dummar, a western suburb, SANA reported.

But in a later statement SANA quoted a military source as saying that "investigations are still underway to determine the cause" of the blast.

The explosion wounded eight pro-government fighters, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

"It remains unclear if the explosion was deliberate or a result of the fires in the area," the war monitor said.

It cited eye-witness accounts claiming rockets were seen flying over the area.

The Syrian capital has been relatively calm since regime forces recaptured the Eastern Ghouta suburbs from rebel forces last year.

However, strikes by Syria's rival Israel continue to target military installations around the capital.

More than 370,000 people have been killed in Syria's war since it erupted in 2011 with a violent crackdown on anti-government protests.