At least 41 children and 48 people in total were killed by two heavy suicide bomb blasts near a school in Homs, Syria, several sources have reported.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which is monitoring the mounting number of casualties from the three-year-old Syrian civil war, said that the explosions occurred in the Ekrima neighborhood in Homs. It added that the death toll of 48 people is likely to go up, as there are also a number of seriously injured people.
Official Syrian sources said that a car bomb and a suicide bomber caused the explosions as the children were coming out of school. Fides News Agency said that the children were targeted because many of them belong to the same religious community as the family of President Bashar al-Assad. It added that the attack was one of the heaviest losses of life in terms of children since the beginning of the Syrian conflict. more >>
Terror group ISIS has beheaded seven men and three women in Syria as part of a campaign to scare locals to drop their resistance against the Islamic militants' advances. U.S.-led airstrikes have meanwhile hit an ISIS stronghold near the Syria-Iraq border.
"I don't know why they were arrested or beheaded. Only the Islamic State knows why. They want to scare people," said Rami Abdulrahman, the head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Reuters reported.
The beheadings were apparently carried out on Tuesday, 8 miles west of Kobani, a Kurdish town near the Turkish border, which has been battling ISIS. The victims included five anti-ISIS Kurdish fighters, three of them women; four Syrian Arab rebels, and a Kurdish male civilian. more >>
A Swiss humanitarian aid worker in Syria is facing death threats coming from ISIS-associated Twitter accounts after tweeting the location of a bunker seized by Islamic State near the Turkey-Syria border.
Oscar Bergamin, president of the small humanitarian aid group called Ash-Sham Care, tweeted the coordinates of an ISIS-controlled bunker in the Syrian town of Jarabalus. Bergamin told BBC in a radio interview on Wednesday that he sent the tweet out of frustration because ISIS' control of the bunker enables militants to block aid workers from accessing the estimated 18,000 refugees in the town.
Although Bergamin said he sent the tweet semi-jokingly because the bunker can be seen from Turkey, he did say he sent a tweet asking U.S. and coalition forces to "blow it up." One of the guiding principles of the International Red Cross is for aid workers to remain neutral when it comes to war and conflicts. more >>
The Red Umbrella, an organization focused on empowering at-risk women, is now seeking to aid female refugees fleeing the Assad regime in Syria.
Based in Dallas, Texas, The Red Umbrella strives to help female refugees in the Middle East and raise awareness about their living conditions to the rest of the world, Lissette Handal, founder and CEO of TRU told The Christian Post.
"The perception people have of the Middle East here [in the U.S.] is of terrorists and the Islamic extremists. I think [Americans] forget that [these people] are also human beings just like you and me," Handal said. The political perception of what is the Middle East overshadows the human aspect." more >>
An Iraqi state television station is now airing a nationally televised parody series that directly mocks Islamic State militants and acts as an anti-ISIS propaganda tool, hoping to prevent more people from joining the jihadist movement.
The first episode of the 30-part comedy series "State of Myths" aired last weekend on the Iraqi owned al-Iraqiya television station. Set in a fictional Iraqi town that has been seized by ISIS, the show makes fun of the militants and their followers and symbolizes the Islamic State as if it had spawned from the devil.
The show's chief supervisor, Thayer Jiyad, said that the show's aim is to alleviate the widespread fear surrounding the group. more >>
A 26-year-old Iranian mother who was set to be executed on Tuesday for killing a man who attempted to rape her has reportedly been granted a last minute reprieve.
FoxNews.com reported that Rayhaneh Jabbari's execution was postponed on Tuesday following protests at Rajaiy Shahr Prison.
"I am currently handcuffed and there is a car waiting outside to take me for the execution of the sentence," Jabbari earlier told her mother while waiting to be sent to the prison facility to be hanged. more >>