Truck bomb at busy checkpoint in Somalia kills at least 78 peoples
Mogadishu’s Aamin Ambulance Service says at least 76 people are dead and scores injured after a huge car bomb exploded at a busy junction on the southwestern side of Mogadishu.
The death toll is likely to rise, with some officials saying as many as 90 people are dead.
Witnesses say the blast occurred at a security checkpoint at an intersection used by vehicles leaving and entering Mogadishu from Afgoye town. An officer said it was a truck bomb.
Early reports indicated the vehicle filled with explosives was targeting a busy taxation office at the junction where vehicles stop to pay their road taxes.
A witness who went to the scene told VOA Somali that he saw blood and pieces of bodies scattered throughout the scene.
“It’s hard to quantify, but many people died,” he said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast. However, the al-Qaida-linked terror group al-Shabab has carried out similar attacks in the past.
Mogadishu, Somalia – A truck bomb exploded at a busy security checkpoint in Somalia’s capital Saturday morning, killing at least 78 people including many students, authorities said. It was one of the deadliest attacks in Mogadishu in recent memory, and witnesses said the force of the blast reminded them of the devastating 2017 bombing that killed hundreds. The blast occurred during rush hour as Somalia returned to work after its weekend. At least 125 people were wounded, Aamin Ambulance service director Abdiqadir Abdulrahman said.
President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed condemned the attack as a “heinous act of terror” and blamed the al-Shabab extremist group, which is linked to al-Qaida. The bombing targeted a tax collection center, police Capt. Mohamed Hussein said. Bodies lay on the ground amid the blackened skeletons of vehicles. At a hospital, families and friends picked through dozens of the dead, gingerly lifting sheets to peer at faces. Hundreds of Mogadishu residents began to donate blood in response to desperate appeals.
Most of those killed were university and other students returning to class, Mayor Omar Mohamud Mohamed said at the scene. Two Turkish brothers were among the dead, Somalia’s foreign minister said. Some of those dead were police officers, but most of them were students,” witness Mohamed Abdi Hakim said. Somalis mourned the deaths of so many young people in a country trying to rebuild itself after decades of conflict. CBS NEWS.