Islamic State group claims Damascus police headquarters attack

Two suicide bombers have conducted an attack near police headquarters on the Khalid ibn al-Walid street in the Syrian capital of Damascus, according to the Syrian Interior Ministry. However, in a statement via the Telegram messaging app, ISIL, also known as ISIS, said three of its fighters with explosive belts carried out the attack.

Two assailants detonated explosive belts outside a police station, an official from the Interior Ministry was quoted as saying by the state news agency SANA. "The guards opened fire on them, forcing them to blow themselves up before they entered the building and achieved their goals", it added.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says clashes with militants intensified in the morning hours on Thursday in the town, as government forces advanced into the western and northern neighborhoods of Mayadeen, which lies on the Euphrates River.

Earlier in October, four suicide bombers killed 15 people when they blew themselves up in the al Midan district of Damascus.

Rebel factions hold a small pocket of territory south of Damascus, bordered to the west by an Islamic State enclave and surrounded from the other sides by Syrian troops and allied forces.

More than 330,000 people have been killed in Syria since the country's conflict began in March 2011 with anti-government protests.

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