NAIROBI, Kenya- A suicide bomber outside a district headquarters in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, killed at least six people including 2 children.
Capt. Mohamed Hussein said the bomber tried to speed through a checkpoint but was stopped by security forces, prompting him to detonate the vehicle near the gate of Howlwadag district headquarters.
The Shabab, a Qaeda-linked extremist group based in Somalia, claimed responsibility for the attack, which shattered a period of calm in Mogadishu.
Th soldiers who stopped the truck were killed instantly, and three civilians also died, said Salah Hassan Omar, the spokesman for the Mogadishu mayor’s office.
Fourteen people, including six children, need intensive care, said the Aamin Ambulance service. Among the wounded people was the deputy district commissioner, Ibrah Hassan Matan.
“I saw bodies strewn on the ground after the explosion before the ambulances and the paramedics reached the scene, and the whole scene was very ugly,” said a witness, Halima Mohamed.
Captain Hussein said that the Shabab, which often select targets in the capital, including a truck bombing in October that left at least 512 people dead, “failed to achieve their goal of inflicting maximum casualties.”