Crime

Car bomb kills two at Somalia shopping mall — police

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A car bomb exploded at a shopping mall in Somalia’s capital on Monday, killing two people and injuring four others in an attack probably by Islamist group al Shabaab, police said.

They said the blast occurred in Mogadishu’s Hamarweyne district, a busy area with shops and restaurants.

“So far, we know two civilians died and four others were injured. It was a car bomb that exploded in front of a Mogadishu shopping mall,” a police officer, Mohamed Hussein, told Reuters.

Hussein said that the number of casualties may rise.

A Reuters witness saw one dead person at the scene, where four cars burned and a restaurant was destroyed.

Al Shabaab frequently carries out bombings in Mogadishu and other parts of Somalia against government and other targets.

The group is trying to remove the Western-backed central government and establish its own rule based on its strict interpretation of sharia law.

Al Shabaab’s militants also carry out attacks outside Somalia, especially in Kenya to pressure it to withdraw troops who form part of an African peacekeeping force that helps defend the central government.

Its latest assault in Kenya, a suicide and gun attack at an office and hotel complex in the capital Nairobi in January killed 21 people.

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