Explosion in Syrian president’s stronghold kills 3
Explosions in Syria - AFP

BEIRUT: Activists are reporting a huge explosion in an apartment building in the Syrian coastal city of Latakia, a stronghold of President Bashar Assad, that left a billowing cloud of orange smoke and killed at least three people, including two children.

Hours after the explosion Monday, there was no government comment. A video circulating online shows smoke rising over the Mar Taqla neighborhood, which overlooks the city port. Pictures also showed the top floor of an apartment building charred as flames rise from the windows.

A Facebook page shared a local announcement for the funeral of three people killed — including a father and two sons, ages six and three.

It was not clear what caused the explosion in a city that remains far from the reach of Syria’s rebels.

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