|Date: Apr 10, 2019|
|Source: The Daily Star|
|Bomb attack kills 13 in Raqqa: monitor|
|Agence France Presse|
BEIRUT: A double bomb attack Tuesday in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, a former bastion of Daesh (ISIS), killed 13 people, mostly civilians, a war monitor said.
A car bomb and explosive ordinance struck a crowded street, killing nine civilians and four U.S.-backed fighters, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack near a military outpost of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) who have been fighting Daesh.
A Raqqa resident said he saw black smoke rising above the site of the attack as ambulance sirens rang out.
He said he saw "blotches of blood on the ground."
"There is panic and fear in the area after the bombings," he added.
Raqqa city was captured by the SDF in 2017 after a massive operation against the extremists.
The SDF declared the defeat of the extremists' so-called "caliphate" last month, after a months-long offensive in Syria's east.
Daesh fighters, however, retain a presence in Syria's vast Badia desert and various other hideouts, and continue to claim deadly attacks in SDF-held territory.
Earlier Tuesday, a car bomb targeted a patrol of the U.S.-led coalition in the northeastern town of Shadadi, the war monitor said.
But it failed to hit its target, leading only to the death of the suicide bomber, it said.
Last month, Daesh fighters killed seven U.S.-backed fighters in an attack on the northern city of Manbij.
The SDF has warned that a new phase has begun in anti-Daesh operations, following the defeat of a proto-state the extremists had proclaimed in 2014.
They appealed for sustained coalition assistance to help smash sleeper cells.