President Barack Obama vowed to help "bring to justice" those behind the "barbaric terrorist attack" against a bus carrying Israeli youth in a Bulgarian resort Wednesday, killing at least six people and wounding 32. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately blamed Iran for the blast.
"I strongly condemn today's barbaric terrorist attack on Israelis in Bulgaria. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those killed and injured, and with the people of Israel, Bulgaria, and any other nation whose citizens were harmed in this awful event," Obama said in a statement. "These attacks against innocent civilians, including children, are completely outrageous."
"The United States will stand with our allies, and provide whatever assistance is necessary to identify and bring to justice the perpetrators of this attack," Obama said. "As Israel has tragically once more been a target of terrorism, the United States reaffirms our unshakeable commitment to Israel's security, and our deep friendship and solidarity with the Israeli people."
The explosion took place in the Black Sea city of Burgas, some 250 miles (400 kilometers) east of the capital, Sofia. The Associated Press reported that the blast occurred at a parking lot at the local airport where the Israeli tourists had arrived.Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, after being briefed by his Bulgarian counterpart, said a bomb placed on the bus caused the explosion. Netanyahu said that the attack followed other plots against Israelis in places like India, Georgia, Thailand, Kenya and Cyprus and declared that "all signs point to Iran." His remarks came amid escalating tensions over Tehran's suspect nuclear program. Israel has warned that it may take military action to disrupt that initiative out of concerns, denied by Iran, that it is designed to help Tehran obtain nuclear weapons.