Blast in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, at least 14 killed; al Shabaab claims responsibility

WION Web Team
Mogadishu, Somalia Published: Mar 22, 2018, 02:56 PM(IST)

Somali security forces and civilians assess the damage at the scene of an explosion outside Weheliye Hotel in Maka al Mukarama street in Mogadishu, Somalia. Photograph:( Reuters )

At least 14 people have been killed in a blast in Somalia's capital Mogadishu.

The explosion occurred on a busy road near a popular hotel named Weheliye in Mogadishu.

Witnesses said the explosion was caused by a car bomb in one of the capital's busiest streets that was packed with people heading home from work.

al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab militants claimed responsibility. The group carries out frequent bombings and other attacks in Mogadishu in a campaign to topple Somalia's Western-backed federal government.

"The blast killed 14 people," Abdiasis Ali Ibrahim, the spokesman for the internal security minister told Radio Mogadishu, which is run by the state.

Abdikadir Abdirahman, director of Amin ambulances, had earlier said 22 people were injured in the blast.

al Shabaab's military operations spokesman said his group had been "behind the blast", adding that the dead included soldiers and officers.

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In October last year, al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabaab had carried out its deadliest-ever bombing, killing over 500 people.

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