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08 Jan 2020 | 06:47 AM UTC

Somalia: Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for January 8 car bombing /update 1

Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for the car bombing on a security checkpoint January 8; further attacks possible in the near term

security
SOM

Event

Al-Shabaab has now claimed responsibility for the attack that took place in Mogadishu on the morning (local time) of Wednesday, January 8. At least four people were killed in the incident and 15 others were injured after a suspected vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) detonated near the Sayidka Junction and Parliament at around 10:00. Local media reported gunfire in the area following the explosion. Details are still emerging.

Context

Al-Shabaab continues to exercise effective control over large zones in the south and center of Somalia and attacks from the group are frequent across the country, including in Mogadishu. The group often targets government officials and military infrastructure in a bid to topple the West and UN-backed government and impose its own strict interpretation of Islam in Somalia.

Advice

Individuals in Mogadishu are advised to avoid the area of the blast, remain vigilant for militant activity, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments. The security environment in Somalia remains complex.

Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.