Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 01 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Coverage of Gaza in the Israeli media

Read more

REPORTERS

1914-1918: The Depths of Hell

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 01 August 2014

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

Read more

#THE 51%

World War One: The war that changed women’s lives

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Ségolène Royal goes for green

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

A look back at some of the Observers' best stories

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults: Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds' (part 2)

Read more

  • Hamas denies capturing Israeli soldier as Gaza truce lies in tatters

    Read more

  • Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

    Read more

  • Police 'chokehold' caused NYC death, coroner rules

    Read more

  • French most keen to erase their online footprint, says Google

    Read more

  • Air France ground workers to strike on August 2

    Read more

  • Rogue general denies Islamist seizure of Benghazi

    Read more

  • Ugandan court strikes down anti-gay legislation

    Read more

  • 1914-1918: The Depths of Hell

    Read more

  • Regional summit to tackle deadly Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • French hospital to open wine bar for terminally ill patients

    Read more

  • Video: Tipping is dying out in French café culture

    Read more

  • €2.5 million in cocaine ‘disappears’ from Paris police HQ

    Read more

  • Appeal court keeps French rogue trader Kerviel in jail

    Read more

  • Interactive: France’s new plan to counter jihadism in Africa

    Read more

  • Ukrainian army suffers losses in separatist attack

    Read more

  • Argentinian markets plummet following default

    Read more

Africa

Suicide bomber strikes at Mogadishu army base

Video by Nicolas GERMAIN

Latest update : 2009-05-25

A suicide car bombing (pictured) killed at least seven people in a government military camp Sunday. Thousands have fled a surge in fighting in Mogadishu, where foreign Islamic militants have reportedly joined the insurgency.

AFP - A suicide car bomber killed seven people in an attack on a Somali military camp Sunday, as more residents fled embattled Mogadishu where foreign fighters have reportedly joined the insurgency.
  
The attack is the first suicide bombing on a government military establishment since the Western-backed transitional administration of President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed came into office in January, correspondents in the capital said.
  
The attacker driving a Toyota Landcruiser tried to force his way into the camp but set off the explosives in front of the gate, killing at least six soldiers and a civilian.
  
Five other people were wounded.
  
"There was a suicide car bomb in our camp today and we lost six soldiers in the attack. One civilian also died," said Lieutenant-Colonel Abdulahi Ousman Agey, the commander of Hamadhwr camp near the Somali seaport.
  
"The bomber tried to enter inside the camp but he was stopped by the guards and exploded his car," he told reporters.
  
Earlier a deputy mayor of Mogadishu, Abdi Fatah Shaweyc, suggested the bomber was a white foreigner.
  
But the base commander said the attacker was later identified as Somali.
  


"After we have seen and investigated his body, we have confirmed that the suicide bomber was Somali," Agey said.
  
Hardline Islamists bent on toppling Sharif's government have since May 7 waged fresh battles across the Horn of Africa nation and have taken control of large swathes of Mogadishu.
  
On Friday, embattled government forces encountered fierce resistance as they tried unsuccessfully to drive the insurgents from the capital.
  
Sharif is holed up in his compound with a handful of supporters and under African Union peacekeepers' protection while 17 days of fighting have now killed more than 150 people and driven tens of thousands of war-weary Somalis out of Mogadishu.
  
The fierce battles in Mogadishu have sharply swollen the numbers of displaced to 57,000 from 49,000 with 8,000 fleeing their homes on Friday alone.
  
A few dozen more people escaped the city again on Sunday in a handful of trucks, an AFP correspondent said.
  
Claiming they get foreign fighters' support, hardline Islamists rebels want to remove the moderate Islamist government and impose a stricter version of Sharia law in Somalia.
  
The latest bomb attack came a day after a US counter-terrorism official said US nationals had likely joined the ranks of insurgents in Somalia.
  
Saturday's edition of the The Times in London reported that security officials had seen more than 290 fighters from Britain, the United States, Canada, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia enter Mogadishu in recent weeks.
  
Observers have warned that since Ethiopia's military withdrawal in January, Somalia risked becoming a haven for jihadists affiliated to Al-Qaeda.
  
Eritrea has been singled out as one African country backing the Somali radicals.
  
The African Union wants UN sanctions on Eritrea, as well as an aerial exclusion zone in Somalia and the blockade of ports and airports to prevent the entry of foreign fighters and weapons shipments.
  
The Somali capital has been ravaged by 18 years of almost uninterrupted civil conflict.

Date created : 2009-05-24

COMMENT(S)