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Explosion outside Syria's highest court

SANA via Reuters

Civil Defense members extinguish fires on cars at the site of an explosion outside Syria's highest court in central Damascus on June 28, 2012. The explosion tore through the car park outside the court on Thursday, torching at least 20 cars, a Reuters witness said, but it was not immediately known if there were any casualties.

SANA via Reuters

Civil Defence members extinguish fires on cars at the site of an explosion outside Syria's highest court in central Damascus on June 28, 2012.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Images in this report were released by the state-controlled Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA).

Reuters reports — Rebel forces attacked Syria's main court in central Damascus on Thursday, state television said, while Turkey deployed troops and anti-aircraft rocket launchers to the Syrian border, building pressure on President Bashar al-Assad.

There was a loud explosion and a column of black smoke rose over Damascus, an Assad stronghold that until the last few days had seemed largely beyond the reach of rebels. State television described it as a "terrorist" blast.

Previously on PhotoBlog: Glimpses of escalating conflict in Syria

Dozens of wrecked and burning cars were strewn over a car park used by lawyers and judges. State news agency SANA said three people were wounded by the bomb hidden in one of the cars.

Read more about developments in Syria on Thursday, which included an announcement by Hamas that one of its members had been killed in his home in Damascus in what the Palestinian Islamist group described as a "cowardly murder".

AFP - Getty Images

A Syrian fireman tries to extinguish fires at the scene of two huge bomb explosions outside the Palace of Justice in Central Damascus on June 28. A police source told AFP on condition of anonymity that two magnetic bombs exploded in two judges' cars in the open-air car park, while a third was in the process of being defused.

SANA via EPA

Smoke rises at the site of bomb explosion in the garage of the Justice Palace in Damascus, Syria, on June 28. According to SANA, a bomb went off at the garage area of the Justice Palace in Damascus, injuring three people and causing material damage.

SANA via AFP - Getty Images

Smoke rises above Damascus after two huge bombs exploded outside the Palace of Justice in Central Damascus on June 28.

A strong explosion rocked the Syrian capital near a busy market and the Palace of Justice. Msnbc.com's Richard Lui reports.