BEIRUT—A “minister” in Syria’s opposition government was among at least 12 people killed in a car bomb attack in the south of the country on Thursday, the body’s spokesman said.
The Islamic State group (IS) claimed the attack in a statement on Telegram, saying one of its jihadists had detonated an explosive vest at an opposition meeting.
According to the opposition, the attack targeted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a police station in Inkhil, in Syria’s southern province of Daraa.
“Twelve people, including the (opposition) provisional government’s local administration minister, Yaacoub al-Ammar, were killed” and dozens more were wounded, Shadi al-Jundi told AFP by telephone.
The victims included “opposition figures, rebels, and local officials”, Jundi said.
In its online statement, IS identified the bomber as Abu Ayub al-Darawi and said there were nearly 50 casualties.
It said the attack was carried out inside “a meeting for the heads of apostasy in the city of Inkhil”, killing “a number from top leaders of the apostasy”.
“The outcome... was nearly 50 falling between those killed and wounded,” it said.
The provisional government was formed in late 2013 and manages institutions in some rebel-held parts of Syria. It is led by Jawad Abu Hatab, elected by the opposition-in-exile National Coalition.
Daraa was the cradle of Syria’s uprising in 2011, when demonstrators took to the streets to call for President Bashar al-Assad’s ouster.
The conflict has since evolved into a brutal multi-front war that has killed more than 300,000 people and forced millions to flee their homes.