Mogadishu blasts claim at least five lives
At least five people were killed and 12 others injured in two separate car bombings in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Monday, officials and witnesses said.
“More than five people were confirmed dead so far and many others are wounded in a car bomb blast near the Weheliye hotel,” said Ise Gure Mohamed, a district police commissioner.
Witnesses said the toll from the blast which occurred along the busy Maka Al-Mukarama road could in fact be higher.
“I saw the dead bodies of seven people but the death toll could be higher, there were seriously wounded people at a teashop close to the road where the vehicle exploded,” said Muhidin Ali, a witness.
Abdirahman Mohamed, another witness, said he saw as many as 10 dead bodies strewn in the area.
Ambulance service workers said they rescued eight people injured in that blast.
An earlier explosion occurred near a military checkpoint in the east of the city after guards stopped a suspicious minibus.
At least four people were wounded in that attack.
The Al-Qaeda-aligned Shabaab militant group which is fighting to overthrow the government claimed the attack on the hotel which it said was hosting “officials and apostates”.
Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire condemned the Monday morning attacks.
“We are very much devastated with the explosions aimed to harm the population, I promise that we will deal with those bloodthirsty elements with an iron fist,” he said.