Terrorist attacks kill 35 in Somalia

2013-04-15 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) A terrorist group with links to al-Qaeda conducted two coordinated attacks in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, on Sunday, leaving 35 people dead. The Islamist militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility.

Mogadishu’s police chief Mahamad Dahir described the attacks as “a calamity” and the attackers as people who “don’t want peace and are used to killing Muslims”.

The first attack, which included car bombs and suicide bombers, was on the Supreme Court Complex. Nine gunmen stormed the courthouse, killing Somali troops and taking officials hostage. The hostages were freed by Somali troops, who killed the gunmen.

A few hours later, a car bomb was detonated near the airport. Police officer Abdifatah Canjex told reporters the second attack was targeted at Turkish vehicles. Two Turkish aid workers died, along with two passersby.

Somali authorities fear the death toll may rise, as dozens were critically injured in the attacks.

Al-Shabab once controlled most of Mogadishu. While the group was pushed out of Mogadishu in 2011, it continues to stage attacks on the city. Sunday's attack was its most violent in the past two years.

Listen to the report by Laura Ieraci: