BEIRUT — A car bomb blew up outside a mosque in a rebel-held village in southern Syria as worshippers were leaving after Friday prayers, killing dozens of people and filling clinics and hospitals with the wounded, antigovernment activists said.
The explosion in Yadouda charred vehicles parked nearby and damaged the mosque, according to video images posted by activists who are fighting to oust President Bashar Assad.
Yadouda is in the southern province of Daraa, the birthplace of the uprising against Assad that began with peaceful protests in March 2011 and morphed into a civil war that has killed more than 130,000 people.
The motive for Friday’s blast could not immediately be determined, and activists provided varying death tolls ranging from 29 to 43. State-run television confirmed the bombing but said only three were killed.
Car bombs have frequently been used by Islamist extremists both against the government and against moderate rivals in the Sunni-led opposition movement. Government forces also have been known to use explosive-packed vehicles and the two sides frequently trade blame in attacks targeting mosques.
An activist in the nearby region of Quneitra, Jamal al-Golani, said the car bomb killed at least 29 people, of which 18 were identified. He gave the Associated Press a list of the names of the identified men who were killed.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which uses a network of local activists to track violence in the country, said 32 people were killed, including a child and 10 rebels.