Car bomb attack near Somalia's presidential palace

2015-09-21 21:12
Wreckage at the scene of a car bomb attack in Mogadishu. (AP Photo/Farah Abdi Warsameh)

Wreckage at the scene of a car bomb attack in Mogadishu. (AP Photo/Farah Abdi Warsameh)

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Mogadishu - At least five people were killed when a car bomb exploded close to the presidential palace in Somalia's capital Mogadishu on Monday, police said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility from the Islamist militant group al-Shabaab, which is trying to overthrow President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud's Western-backed government.

The group stepped up attacks this month, retaking a town in the central region and attacking African Union troops.

"So far, we know five soldiers died and over a dozen were wounded," Ali Hussein, a police officer, told Reuters, adding that the attack might have been aimed at a United Nations convoy that left the palace just before the blast.

Ahmed Aden, a resident in the area, said he had heard a loud blast followed by gunfire.

A Reuters reporter saw damage to the gate of the compound, and five burnt-out cars at the scene.

Read more on:    al-shabaab  |  hassan sheikh mohamud  |  somalia  |  east africa

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