The Somali president said the death toll would rise further after Saturday’s twin bombings targeted the education ministry.
Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said at least 100 people were killed and 300 injured in two car bomb explosions in the country’s capital Mogadishu.
Mohamud blamed the armed group al-Shabab for the attacks and told reporters on Sunday that he expected the death toll from the twin explosions to rise further.
“Those who were massacred… included mothers with children in their arms, sick fathers, students sent to school, business people struggling with their families,” said Mohamud. . .
President says death toll rises to 100, more than 300 injured in horrific bombings at Sobe junction @HassanSMohamud, more deaths are likely to increase. “We will defeat and we have defeated this extremist group,” the head of state said after visiting the site of the terrorist attack. pic.twitter.com/VcobTx3CgR
– SONNA (@SONNALIVE) October 30, 2022
The authorities said attack on saturday targeted the Somali education ministry and a school and took place at the busy Sobe intersection.
Sadiq Doodishe, a police spokesman, told reporters that women, children and the elderly were killed in the attack.
State news agency SONNA said independent journalist Mohamed Isse Kona was also killed.
The first explosion hit the ground; Then a second explosion occurred as ambulances arrived and people gathered to help the victims, police officer Nur Farah told Reuters news agency.
Witness Abdirazak Hassan told the Associated Press news agency: “I was 100 meters away when the second explosion happened. “I can’t count the bodies on the ground because [number of] dead. He said the first blast hit the education ministry’s perimeter wall, where hawkers and money changers are located.
A Reuters journalist near the blast site said the two explosions occurred minutes apart and broke windows in the vicinity. Blood from victims of the explosion covered the runway just outside the building, he said.
Moments after the explosion, a large cloud of smoke enveloped the area.
Aamin Ambulance Service said Saturday that it had collected at least 35 injured people. Director Abdulkadir Adan added in a tweet that an ambulance responding to the first attack was destroyed by the second explosion.
A driver and a first aid worker were injured in the explosion, he said.
An Ameen ambulance driver was injured when his ambulance was completely destroyed. Our team tried to help the victims trapped in an explosion that hit the Ministry of Education building. A very sad incident was that the second explosion hit the vehicle.
– Dr. Abdulkadir Adan (@DrAadem) October 29, 2022
The United Nations Mission to Somalia condemned Saturday’s “malicious attack” and offered condolences to the families of the victims. Turkey condemned the “horrific” attack, while Qatar – staunchly rejecting violence and “terrorism” – expressed condolences and wished a speedy recovery to those injured.
The explosions occurred at the same site where Somalia’s largest bombing occurred in the same month of 2017. In that bombing, which killed more than 500 people, A truck bomb exploded outside a crowded hotel at the K5 intersection, where government offices, restaurants and kiosks are located.
Al Qaeda’s al-Shabab ally, which has been fighting in Somalia for more than a decade, is seeking to overthrow the central government and establish its own rule based on a strict interpretation of Islamic law.
The group used a bombing campaign both in Somalia and elsewhere, and targets included military installations as well as hotels, shopping malls and heavy traffic areas.
In August at least 20 people died and dozens were injured when al-Shabab fighters stormed the Hayat hotel in Mogadishu, sparking a 30-hour skirmish with security forces before the siege finally ended.
Mohamud, with support from the United States and allied local militias, launched an offensive against the group, though with limited results.