Photo: Reuters
Report: 7 killed in Syria weapons training explosion
Kuwaiti newspaper reports five Hamas operatives, two Iranian Revolutionary Guards trainers died at start of month in explosion during rocket dismantling exercise meant to east smuggling into Gaza Strip

Five Hamas operatives and two Iranian Revolutionary Guards trainers were killed in an explosion that took place on a Hamas military base near Damascus, Syria, Kuwaiti daily al-Siyasa reported on Sunday.


According to the report, the explosion occurred at the start of November, and five more Hamas operatives were also injured during weapons training.


Sources told the paper that the explosion was the result of a technical failure during a rocket dismantling and reassembling training exercise. The exercise, which was carried out using Iranian-made long-range rockets, was meant to ease the smuggling of such arms through the Gaza tunnels.


The incident covered up and kept quiet in an attempt to hide the presence of Iranian Revolutionary Guards trainers in Syria. Sunday's report was the first in regards to the incident.


According to the report, Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal and Syrian Military Intelligence Chief Abdulfattah Qudsiyya, responsible for the Revolutionary Guards' trainers in Syria's activity, agreed on keeping the matter under wraps.


The sources told the paper that the bodies of the five Hamas men killed in the explosion were buried at the al-Yarmouk refugee camp outside Damascus. Their families were told that they were killed in a road accident on November 7, when a bus hit a truck on a highway outside of the capital.


Simultaneously, the Iranian embassy in Damascus handled the transferring of the Iranian trainers' bodies back to their homeland.


Those injured in the explosion were hospitalized at the Tishrin military hospital in the capital, and were placed under isolation and not allowed visitors, for fear the truth about the explosion may come to light.


It should be noted that al-Siyasa's report was not confirmed by any other source, and that the paper has been known to gore Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah with sensational reports.


פרסום ראשון: 11.15.09, 11:40
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