Death toll rises to 120 in Somalia: report


Mogadishu: The death toll from two car bombings in Somalia’s capital has reached 120 and could rise further as some people are still missing, the country’s health minister said on Monday.

Ali Haji said more than 320 other people were injured in Saturday’s midday blasts at a busy intersection in Mogadishu, and more than 150 of them are still being treated in hospitals, AP reports.

Police officials had said that one of the explosions targeted the Ministry of Education, which is located at the junction in the area, while other explosions were heard in the vicinity of the K-5 junction, which houses government offices, hotels and restaurants.

Two days after the attack, it is still unclear how the explosive-laden vehicles passed through a city full of checkpoints and constantly on alert for attacks.

According to the report, al-Qaida affiliate al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for the attacks and said it targeted the education ministry, which it accused of turning young people away from Islam.

Somalia’s government under newly elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has been engaged in a new offensive against al-Shabab, including efforts to shut down its financial network, AP reports, adding that the government has said the fight will continue.

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