Suicide Bomber Attacks Mosque in Syrian Coastal City of Latakia

Attacker Targeted People Leaving Afternoon Prayers

by Jason Ditz, June 02, 2016

A suicide bomber on a motorcycle drove up to an area near a mosque in the Syrian coastal city of Latakia today, detonating himself in a crowd of people leaving afternoon prayers. At least three were reported killed, or as many as five according to some sources.

There has been no claim of responsibility for today’s attack, but ISIS had previously taken credit for similar attacks elsewhere in Latakia Province, saying the attacks were aimed at the Alawite religious minority which lives there.

Almost entirely under the control of the Syrian government throughout the civil war, Latakia has been a safe haven for not just Alawites, but other religious minorities, who have flocked there as Islamist factions took the neighboring Idlib Province.

Between this and other recent attacks near Tartus, the Latakia Province seems to be an increasing target for ISIS forces, putting civilians who had mostly been fortunate enough to avoid the worst of the civil war up until now in a dangerous spot indeed.

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