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Suspected car bomb kills at least 10 people in Somali capital

A suspected car bomb killed atleast 10 people when it exploded at a police checkpoint next toa busy market in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, on Saturday, police and witnesses said.

Reuters witnesses saw several bodies at the scene of theblast near the vegetable market in Mogadishu's Waberi district,where shops and stalls were wrecked and ambulances raced awaywith casualties. Pools of blood lay on the ground.

The Somali Islamist group al Shabaab often carries out suchattacks in the capital, although there was no immediate claim ofresponsibility by the group, which wants to topple theWestern-backed government and impose its strict interpretationof Islam.

“The whole market is ruined and people perished. The deathtoll is sure to rise,” Colonel Abdikadir Farah, a policeofficer, told Reuters, saying at least 10 people had been confirmed dead so far, while a dozen more were wounded.

Somalia is still battling an Islamist insurgency while itseeks to rebuild after more than two decades of conflict andchaos that have left the nation in tatters.

It is holding a vote at polling centres across the countryover several weeks for a new parliament. Some 14,000 people representing Somalia's federal states have been chosen to pickthe 275 lawmakers. Those members of parliament will choose a new president.

The government, U.N. officials and international donors havesaid security issues prevented a broader vote. The parliamentary vote was due to end on Nov. 30, after several delays, but anofficial said it was now likely to last until mid-December.

Al Shabaab accuses the presidential and parliamentarycandidates of being foreign stooges. “We urge Somalis to taketheir guns and liberate our Somalia,” Al Shabaab official SheikhAli Mohamed Hussein told Reuters earlier this week.

Candidates and government officials dismiss suchaccusations.


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Printable version | Oct 21, 2021 11:27:37 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Suspected-car-bomb-kills-at-least-10-people-in-Somali-capital/article16706509.ece

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