MOGADISHU, Sept 25 (Reuters) – A suicide automotive bomb killed a minimum of eight folks within the Somali capital on Saturday at a avenue junction close to the president’s palace, police mentioned, and al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab mentioned it was behind the assault which focused a convoy going into the palace.

Police spokesperson Abdifatah Aden Hassan informed reporters on the scene of the blast the casualties could possibly be increased, since among the lifeless and wounded had been taken away by their family members.

“Al Shabaab is behind the blast. They killed eight folks together with a soldier and a mom and two youngsters. Al Shabaab massacres civilians,” he mentioned.

Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu, the federal government spokesperson, mentioned amongst these killed was Hibaq Abukar, an advisor of ladies and human rights affairs in Prime Minister Mohammed Hussein Roble’s workplace.

Civilians and Somalian safety officers collect on the scene of a suicide automotive bomb at a avenue junction close to the president’s residence, in Mogadishu, Somalia, September 25, 2021. REUTERS/Feisal Omar

“She was one of many pillars of PM’s workplace (for) ladies affairs,” he mentioned on his Fb account.

It was not instantly clear if Abukar was within the convoy or if she simply occurred to be shut by when the blast occurred.

Al Shabaab confirmed it was behind the assault. The group, which desires to overthrow the federal government and impose its personal strict interpretation of Islamic regulation, often carries out such bombings.

“A Mujahid driving a suicide automotive bomb focused a convoy of vehicles going into the (presidential) palace,” Abdiasis Abu Musab, al Shabaab army operation spokesperson, informed Reuters by telephone.

A Reuters witness on the scene of the assault reported seeing seven vehicles and three rickshaws destroyed by the blast, and the entire junction lined in blood.

Reporting by Abdi Sheikh and Feisal Omar; writing by George Obulutsa; modifying by Clelia Oziel

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