31 wounded, several dead in Bulgaria blast

Attack on tourist bus; identification of the dead "under way"

The Israeli foreign ministry confirmed Thursday that at least 31 Israelis had been wounded in a Bulgarian bomb attack and that identification of several dead was under way.

Foreign ministry spokesman Lior Ben Dor told AFP that according to the Israeli equivalent of the Red Cross, Magen David Adom, which had visited the injured "there are 31 wounded, 28 hospitalised at Burgas (where the attack took place) and three others in serious condition who were transferred to Sofia."

Bulgaria said Wednesday's blast at its Black Sea airport of Burgas left six people dead and more than 30 wounded in the deadliest attack on Israelis abroad since 2004.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately blamed arch foe Iran for the explosion that ripped through a bus picking up tourists arriving from Tel Aviv heading for the beaches and seaside resorts of the formerly communist European Union country.

The Israeli foreign ministry spokesman added: "More injured people might be in other hospitals. This possibility is being checked out by Magen David Adom. Almost all the families of the wounded have been contacted."

It was the first official confirmation by the Israelis of the nationality of the wounded.

Ben Dor said identification of the dead was "under way" and could take several hours or even a day.

Israeli specialised medical teams arrived at Burgas overnight, Ben Dor said.

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