POSTED: 9:25 p.m. HST, Jul 18, 2012
LAST UPDATED: 9:40 p.m. HST, Jul 18, 2012
SOFIA, Bulgaria >> A brazen daytime bombing that killed eight people and injured dozens on a bus full of Israeli tourists today was most likely a suicide attack, Bulgaria’s interior minister said. He said the suspected attacker was carrying a Michigan driver’s license that was being sent to the FBI for authentication.
Tsvetan Tsvetanov said the suspected bomber appeared on security camera tape for nearly an hour before the Wednesday attack, which gutted the bus at the airport in the quiet Black Sea resort city of Burgas, 250 miles east of the capital, Sofia.
Tsvetanov said the death toll had risen to eight, including the suspected bomber, as the Bulgarian driver of the bus died in the hospital. Six of the victims are Israeli citizens, while the nationality of the suspected bomber remains unknown. Some 30 others were wounded in the attack.
The Israelis had just arrived on a charter flight from Tel Aviv carrying 154 people, including eight children. A Bulgarian government plane will fly some 100 Israelis who were not wounded and wanted to cut short their vacation back to Israel.
No group had immediately claimed responsibility, but suspicion had immediately fallen upon Iran and its Lebanese proxy, the Hezbollah guerrilla group.
“All signs point to Iran,” Netanyahu said today. “Just in the past few months, we have seen attempts by Iran to harm Israelis in Thailand, India, Georgia, Kenya, Cyprus and more. This is an Iranian terror attack that is spreading across the world. Israel will react forcefully to Iran’s terror.”
The Israeli leader gave no evidence to back his charges. The bombing was the latest in a series of attacks attributed to Iran that have targeted Israelis and Jews overseas and threatened to escalate a shadow war between the two arch-enemies.