Six die in Israeli bus bomb attack
Published 18/07/2012 | 17:06
At least six people were killed and 32 others injured when a bus carrying Israeli youths exploded in a Bulgarian resort, police and hospital officials said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it "an Iranian terror attack" and promised a tough response.
The blast happened in the Black Sea city of Burgas, some 250 mile east of the capital, Sofia.
Images shown on Israeli and Bulgarian media showed smoke billowing from the scene - a car park at the local airport, where the Israeli tourists had apparently just landed. Several buses and cars were on fire near the carcass of the targeted vehicle.
Bulgaria, an Eastern European nation bordering Greece and Turkey, is a popular tourist destination for Israelis.
It was not yet certain what caused the blast - whether it was the result of a suicide bomber or a device remotely detonated - and no group immediately claimed responsibility.
But Israelis often have been targeted in attacks outside their country, namely in India, Thailand and Azerbaijan. Israel suspects Iran of being behind these attacks, which have further added to tensions between the two nations already exacerbated by Israeli warnings against Iran's alleged pursuit of a nuclear weapons programme.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Jonathan Rosenzweig said a flight from Tel Aviv had landed at 4.45pm and the blast took place about 40 minutes later. The tourists were apparently boarding the buses to go to their hotels.
Witness Gal Malka told Israel's Channel 2 TV that she saw someone board the bus before it exploded. Ms Malka, who was slightly injured, said the bus was full of Israeli teenagers.
"We were at the entrance of the bus and in a few seconds we heard a huge boom," she said.