Militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for a bomb attack Monday on a United Nations bus in northern Somalia that killed at least seven people and wounded several others.
Garowe, SomaliaGarowe, Somalia
The U.N. Children’s Fund said four of its staff members were killed and another four were in serious condition after the blast in the town of Garowe, which happened as they traveled from their guest house to their office.
A local police official said the dead included four foreigners, two Somalis and a suicide bomber. There was no immediate word on the nationalities of the foreign workers.
U.N. Special Representative for Somalia Nick Kay condemned the attack, saying on Twitter he was “shocked and appalled by loss of life.”
The bombing was al-Shabab’s third deadly attack against international personnel in the span of three days.
On Sunday, al-Shabab militants killed three African Union peacekeepers from Burundi and wounded several other soldiers in the southern town of Lego.
The AU called that attack a “cowardly ambush.”
“This attack on AMISOM peacekeepers is part of the continuous effort to subvert Somalia,” AU envoy to Somalia MamanSidikou said in a statement. “It is an attempt at disrupting the growth that is evident across all regions, by the enemies of the Somali people.”
The governor of the Lower Shabelle region, Abdulkadir Mohamed Nur “Siidi,” told VOA Somali that at least 11 al-Shabab militants were killed during an exchange of heavy fire.
An attack Saturday on a Kenyan convoy killed three soldiers and wounded eight others while they were on a route patrol in the Delbio area of Lower Jubba region.
Al-Shabab is attempting to overthrow the Somali government and establish an Islamic state.
Earlier this month, al-Shabab staged an attack on Kenya’s Garissa University College, killing 148 people. Al-Shabab said that attack was revenge for Kenyan military action in neighboring Somalia.
Somalia’s government has placed bounties on the heads of 11 al-Shabab leaders, including the militant group’s top leader and the alleged mastermind of the massacre in Kenya, Mohamed Mohamud, also known as Dulyadin.