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Bomb blast in a bus kills 3 civilians in Syria's Afrin: monitor

Nine other people, including fighters, were wounded in the explosion, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdel Rahman, told AFP.

A screengrab of the Syrian army's battle against Islamic State. Picture: CNN

DAMASCUS – A bomb blast in a bus killed three civilians Sunday in the northern Syrian city of Afrin on the first anniversary of a Turkish attack on the Kurdish-majority region, a war monitor said.

Nine other people, including fighters, were wounded in the explosion, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdel Rahman, told AFP.

Turkish troops and allied rebel groups seized the Afrin region from Kurdish forces in March last year after a two-month air and ground offensive.

"The explosion is the result of a bomb that was placed in a bus in the centre of Afrin," Abdel Rahman said.

It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast, the second to rock Afrin since 16 December when a car bomb killed at least nine people, including five civilians, near a pro-Turkey rebel post in the city.

That explosion came after Turkish President Recep Tayyib Erdogan threatened to launch a new offensive against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in Syria.

Turkey accuses the YPG of being "terrorists", but the Kurdish militia also forms the backbone of a US-backed alliance fighting the Islamic State group in Syria.