By : Zakeriye ahmed Horndiplomat Correspondent
Mogadishu — Above 100 were killed, and around 300 others were injured in yesterday’s two-car bombings in Mogadishu’s Zoobe intersection, according to Somalia’s President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, who spoke to the media last night after he reached the attack site.
“God willing, another October will not happen. The country is at war, and now I am talking to you; a war is going on. The heroes of the armed forces are after the Khawarij”, he said.
Somalia’s police commander, Major General Abdi Hassan Hijaar, Galmudug’s state leader, Ahmed Abdi Karie, ministers including health and education, and Mogadishu’s mayor, Yussuf Hussein Madaale, accompanied President Hassan during his visit to yesterday’s horrific attack scene.
President Hassan urged the people to go to the hospitals and contribute blood for those wounded in the attack. He promised free education to the children left behind by the victims killed in Saturday’s attacks and the children of deceased victims of other Al-Shabab attacks.
Al Shabaab militants released a statement claiming responsibility for the attack. They stated that the building of the Ministry of Education was the target, located at one of the busiest junctions in the capital.
President Hassan condemned the attack earlier in a tweet by saying, “Today’s cruel and cowardly terrorist attack on innocent people by the morally bankrupt and criminal Al-Shabab group can’t discourage us, but will further strengthen our resolve to defeat them once and for all. Our government and brave people will continue to defend Somalia against evil”.
Among those who died in the explosions were local reporter Mohamed Isse Koona and Mogadishu’ Hodan District Police commissioner Hussein Added Osman. Abdifatah Aynab, former Puntland regional administration’s ministry of the constitution, federal affairs and the current counsellor of Somalia’s embassy in China, VOA Somali reporter Abdulkadir OK and Reuters photojournalist Feisal Omar were wounded in the explosions.
Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre appointed a ten-member committee led by the health minister Dr Ali Haji and including the education minister and Mogadishu’s mayor, to assess the scale of the damage caused by yesterday’s terrorist attacks and coordinate the emergency response.
Former and current officials from the government, foreign embassies in Somalia and some states also condemned the attack.