The death toll from Saturday’s bombing in Mogadishu has added to 81, two victims having died from their injuries, the Somali Ministry of Information said on Monday.
“The total death toll is currently 81. Two other people died from their injuries. One of them was among the seriously injured who were transported to Turkey yesterday (Sunday) and another victim died in one of the hospitals in Mogadishu, ”ministry spokesman Ismail told AFP. Muktar.
He said a dozen people were still missing after the car bomb attack against a checkpoint in a busy area, the deadliest to hit Mogadishu in two years.
The previous toll was 79 dead and 125 injured. The attack was not claimed, but the Somali president, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, known as « Farmajo », accused the Islamists shebab.
Affiliated with Al Qaeda, the Shebab routinely carries out car bombs and other types of attacks in Mogadishu as part of an insurgency launched against the government supported by the international community.
This attack is the deadliest since the one committed in 2017 with a truck bomb, which had killed more than 500 people in the capital. Nor had it been claimed. Shebab do not usually claim attacks that claim too many victims among the civilian population, for fear of losing the support they still enjoy with some Somalis.
Among the 81 dead were at least 16 students from the private university of Banadir, whose bus was passing at this intersection at the time of the explosion, and two Turkish nationals.
Since 2015, Somalia has been hit by 13 attacks that have killed at least 20 people, including 11 in Mogadishu, according to an AFP count. But the attacks with a lower balance sheet are almost weekly.
The Shebab have sworn the loss of the Somali government, supported by the international community and the 20,000 men of the African Union force in Somalia (Amisom).
Driven out of Mogadishu in 2011, they lost most of their strongholds but still control large rural areas from where they conduct guerrilla warfare and suicide attacks. It is estimated that there are between 5 and 9,000 combatants.
The United States announced that it had killed four “terrorists” on Sunday in three strikes in Somalia against the Shebab.