Somalia

Mogadishu (AFP) The death toll from Saturday’s truck bombing in a shopping district in the Somali capital Mogadishu surged to at least 137 with 300 people injured, police said on Sunday. “We are getting different numbers in terms of the casualty from the medical centres, but we have confirmed so far 137 (dead), most of them burned beyond recognition, police official Ibrahim Mohamed told AFP. “The death toll could be higher because there are more than 300 wounded, some of them seriously.” The blast struck on Saturday afternoon at aRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Desperate Somalis searched for news of missing loved-ones on Monday, after a massive truck bomb in Mogadishu killed at least 276 people and left 300 injured in the deadliest ever attack to hit the conflict-torn nation. Residents of the Somali capital, while wearily accustomed to regular bombs and attacks by Islamist militants, have been left stunned by the monster explosion Saturday which gutted surrounding buildings and left victims burned beyond recognition. A statement from the information ministry on Monday said “276 people were killed in the blast… andRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) A truck bomb exploded outside a hotel at a busy junction in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Saturday causing widespread devastation that left at least 20 dead, with the toll likely to rise. “Initial reports from emergency departments indicate more than 20 bodies picked up off the street and many more are under the wreckage of buildings destroyed by the blast”, said Ibrahim Mohamed, a senior police officer. Government security official Mohamed Aden said that bombing took place in a busy part of the city. “There was a hugeRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Somalia’s defence minister and army chief have both resigned, without explaining why, in a potential blow to the government’s fight against Shabaab Islamist militants. The resignations come as Somali security forces struggle to contain attacks by the al-Qaeda-linked group. Defence Minister Abdirashid Abdullahi confirmed his resignation to AFP on Friday, but would not be drawn on the reasons behind his decision. The prime minister’s office announced the resignation of Abdullahi and army chief Ahmed Mohamed Jimale Irfid on Thursday. Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, widely known by hisRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Shabaab jihadists attacked a Somali army base early Friday in the southern town of Barire, killing at least eight soldiers and stealing equipment, officials and witnesses said. The assault on the Somali National Army military camp in Barire, around 40 kilometres (25 miles) west of the capital Mogadishu, began with two suicide attackers detonating their car bombs before gunmen overran the base. “There was heavy fighting this morning,” said Mohamed Haji Ali, a Somali military commander, confirming the attack to local media without providing details of casualties. ResidentsRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Somali soldiers, some of them wounded, fled across the border into Kenya during an attack by Islamic militants on the town of Bulo Hawo on Monday, security sources said. At least 12 people died when fighters from the Al-Qaeda-aligned Shabaab group attacked the border town, according to witnesses, while many soldiers fled westward a few kilometres to the Kenyan town of Mandera. “We have several of the soldiers from Somalia who ran to Kenya after the attack,” said Mohamud Saleh, regional coordinator for north eastern Kenya. “Some areRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Several thousand fans on Friday watched the first night-time football match to be played in Mogadishu since chaos descended on the Somali capital nearly three decades ago, raucously backing their respective teams in what the mayor called a “historic” event. The match — the final of a city-wide club tournament for 16- to 18-year-olds — took place at the Konis Stadium, which has been renovated by FIFA. It was broadcast live on several television channels but took place under tight security because of the threat posed by theRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) More than 10 soldiers died on Sunday and several others were wounded when Al-Qaeda-aligned Shabaab militants stormed a base in southern Somalia, security sources said. The militants drove a truck loaded with explosives to the main entrance of the base in Bulogadud, about 70 kilometres (40 miles) from the port town of Kismayo and then attacked the soldiers. “There was an attack on the military base in Bulogadud this morning… the initial information indicates that more than 10 soldiers were killed,” Abdulahi Mohamed, a senior security official, saidRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) A one-time deputy leader and spokesman for Somalia’s Shabaab insurgents defected to the country’s government on Sunday, a local official said. Muktar Robow was the subject of a $5 million bounty from the United States for his role with the Al-Qaeda linked Islamist militants. But his split with former Shabaab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane four years ago led him to seek safety in his hometown in Somalia’s southwest Bakool region, though he never formally renounced the insurgency. “Muktar Robow defected from Shabaab and he is now in HudurRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) At least five people were killed and ten wounded in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Sunday when a car bomb detonated on a busy road, the security ministry said. There was no immediate claim of responsiblity but the bombing fits the pattern of Al-Qaeda linked Shabaab Islamists, who have carried out numerous suicide bombings and raids in the capital targeting civilian, government and military targets. Security ministry spokesman Ahmed Mohamud said five civilians were killed and ten others wounded in the car bomb blast. “It occurred in front ofRead More