Truck bomb kills at least 79 at rush hour

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - NATION+WORLD -

MO­GADISHU, SO­MA­LIA » A truck bomb ex­ploded at a busy se­cu­rity check­point in So­ma­lia’s cap­i­tal Satur­day morn­ing, killing at least 79 peo­ple, in­clud­ing many stu­dents, au­thor­i­ties said. It was the worst at­tack in Mo­gadishu since the dev­as­tat­ing 2017 bomb­ing that killed hun­dreds.

The ex­plo­sion ripped through rush hour as So­ma­lia re­turned to work af­ter its week­end. At least 125 peo­ple were wounded, Aamin Am­bu­lance ser­vice di­rec­tor Ab­diqadir Ab­dulrah­man said, and hun­dreds of Mo­gadishu res­i­dents do­nated blood in re­sponse to des­per­ate ap­peals.

Pres­i­dent Mo­hamed Ab­dul­lahi Mo­hamed con­demned the at­tack as a “heinous act of ter­ror” and blamed the lo­cal al-Shabab ex­trem­ist group, which is linked to al-Qaida and whose reach has ex­tended to deadly at­tacks in neigh­bor­ing Kenya.

Most of those killed were univer­sity stu­dents re­turn­ing to class and po­lice of­fi­cers, said So­ma­lia’s po­lice chief, Gen. Abdi Has­san Hi­jar.

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