The New Arab Logo

Breaking News
Play Video

The New Arab & agencies

Death toll from Somalia car bombs rises to 45

[Getty file photo]

Date of publication: 24 February, 2018

Share this page:
  • 0

  • twitter
At least 45 people were killed when two car bombs exploded on Friday near the presidential palace and a hotel in the Somali capital of Mogadishu
At least 45 people were killed when two car bombs exploded on Friday near the presidential palace and a hotel in the Somali capital of Mogadishu, the city's main ambulance service said. Scores of others were injured.

The new death tolls were confirmed on Saturday to Reuters.

Jihadist rebels claimed the attack.

The bombings targeted the presidential palace and a city hotel, police said.

The first blast, followed by gunfire, occurred at a checkpoint close to Villa Somalia, the name for the seat of government, while a second followed soon after at a hotel.

The Shabaab Islamist militant group claimed the attacks in a statement posted online, saying it was targeting the government and security services.

The blasts follow weeks of relative calm in Mogadishu.

According to officials, the main attack involved the use of a vehicle loaded with explosives attempting to breach a checkpoint leading to the presidential palace but security forces prevented the assault.

"The security forces foiled the intent of the terrorists. They were aiming for key targets but they could not even go closer, there were five of them killed by the security force," Abdulahi Ahmed, a security officer, told AFP.

"The situation is back to normal and the security forces are in control," he added.

The Shabaab is fighting to overthrow Somalia's internationally-backed government. In October it carried out its deadliest-ever bombing, killing over 500 people.

In the wake of that attack Somalia's government declared a fresh offensive against the group and US drone strikes have increased in frequency.

While the militant group was pushed out of the capital in 2011 by an African Union force it continues to control large parts of the countryside and launches regular attacks on government, military and civilian targets.

The New ArabComments

Most Popular

Most Popular

    Read More