A car bomb exploded near the Russian Embassy and the headquarters of President Bashar Assad’s ruling Baath party in central Damascus on Thursday.
Television footage of the scene showed at least four bodies in the street, presumed dead, according to a report from The Associated Press.
Syria’s state-owned television was calling the explosion a “terrorist” attack in an area that has been normally sheltered from much of Syria’s large-scale and random violence, AP reports. Most of the attacks there have been targeted toward specific government buildings — with the exception of the last two days, where one mortar attack struck near a soccer stadium, according to AP.
Eyewitness said the car exploded at a checkpoint, and children are among the injured, AP said.
“It was huge. Everything in the shop turned upside down,” one local resident said, according to the AP report.