Somalis killed in mortar attack

Mortar attacks in two areas of the Somali capital have killed five people and injured 10, a day after an unknown pro-Islamic courts group said it would step up violence.

Somalis killed in mortar attack

Unknown men fired mortars at houses and a homeless shelter in a southern residential area of Mogadishu on Saturday. Two girls were among those killed in the attacks.


Mogadishu has seen increasing violence over the past month, after government troops backed by Ethiopian forces ousted the Union of Islamic Courts, which had controlled the capital and much of southern Somalia.


The Islamic courts, which still has support in Mogadishu, has vowed to wage an Iraq-style fighter operation, though it was immediately unclear why the residential area was targeted.


Sadiya Dahir Nur, a mother of six, said: "A mortar hit our house, killing my 14-year-old daughter who had returned from school."


She said her sister and two cousins were also wounded.


Other victims


Olad Yusuf Ahmed, a relative of the victims, said a nearby house was also hit, killing three people and wounding four.


At the homeless camp, a mortar blast killed a 13-year-old girl and wounded two people, said Shamsa Hadi Abdi Wali, a nurse at the nearby Banadir Hospital who had gone to the camp to offer help after the attack.


Another three mortars were aimed at Mogadishu's airport, but no casualties or damages were reported there, airport manager Mohamed Ahmed Mohamed said.


Hotels hit


Earlier on Saturday, armed men fired a mortar at the Kaah hotel, in northern Mogadishu, where the transitional government was holding a week-long meeting to discuss reconciliation in the capital.


One witness said he had seen a girl injured in the attack.


Another hotel, the Global, was hit by a rocket late Friday, just hours after a masked man at a pro-Islamist courts rally said that Ethiopian soldiers would be attacked in their hotels. No one was injured in the incident.


The man, who gave his name only as Abdirisaq, claimed he was speaking on behalf of a group called the Popular Resistance Movement in the Land of the Two Migrations.


He said the group was responsible for attacks on Somali government buildings and Ethiopian troops in Mogadishu.


Website message


The same group claimed responsibility for the attack at the Global hotel, with a message on Saturday on the official website of the Islamic courts, saying it had targeted Ethiopian generals staying there.


Before ousting the Islamic courts from Mogadishu, and prompting its supporters to flee over the border to neighbouring Kenya, the government was confined to Baidoa.


Also on Saturday, Kenya handed over about 20 people suspected of having fought with or been linked to the Islamic courts to the Somali authorities, a British diplomat and a Kenyan police officer said, both speaking on condition of anonymity.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16