Car bomb rocks Mogadishu hours after Somalia cabinet announcement

Car bomb rocks Mogadishu hours after Somalia cabinet announcement
The attack took place within a close to Somalia's presidential compound, and moments after the announcement of a new cabinet to govern the war-torn country.
2 min read
21 March, 2017
Al-Shabab has previously claimed responsibility for bomb attacks in the Somali capital [Twitter]


A suicide-bomb attack has killed at least five people less than one kilometre from Somalia's presidential compound, local police said.

In the attack's aftermath local media reported that at least five people had been killed in the attack and a further ten injured.

"A suicide car bomb rammed into a checkpoint near the national theatre. It is too early to know details and casualties," Ahmed Hussein, a police officer, told Reuters.

The national theatre is located around 300 metres from the heavily-fortified Villa Somalia, a compound also housing government agencies.

Al-Qaeda-linked insurgent group al-Shabab has previously claimed responsibility for bomb blasts and gun attacks in the capital. However, in the immediate aftermath of Tuesday's attack it remained unclear who was responsible.

Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed was sworn in as Somalia's new president in February and has promised al-Shabab fighters "a good life" if they put down their arms and surrender.

Despite losing most of its territory to African Union peacekeepers - operating in the country in support of the Somali government - the al-Qaeda affiliated remains capable of conducting deadly bombings in areas outside its immediate control.

Tuesday's attack took place on the same day that Prime Minister Hassan Ali Kheyre named a 26-strong cabinet, which includes a foreign affairs chief as finance minister, a former BBC journalist as foreign minister.