Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Gaza: A Truce At All Costs?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville ceasefire talks deliver fragile deal

Read more

FOCUS

Sluggish tourist season in Crimea

Read more

ENCORE!

Bartabas : Mixing Christ with Spanish music and dancing horses

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut

Read more

#TECH 24

Mind the Gender Gap : getting more women into the tech sector

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Bolivian children: heading to work aged 10

Read more

  • France says missing Algerian plane 'probably crashed'

    Read more

  • 51 French nationals aboard missing Algerian plane

    Read more

  • Deadly Israeli strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • Pope meets with Sudanese Christian woman sentenced to death for apostasy

    Read more

  • Algerian jet vanishes: 'We should eliminate the missile hypothesis'

    Read more

  • Italy’s Nibali cruises to easy victory in 18th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • US, European aviation agencies lift travel restrictions to Tel Aviv

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

  • Two foreign women shot dead in western Afghanistan

    Read more

  • At least 60 killed in attack on prison convoy near Baghdad

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

  • Ceasefire agreed for Central African Republic

    Read more

  • Can Jew-kissing-Arab selfie give peace a viral chance?

    Read more

  • Botched Arizona execution takes nearly two hours

    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)