8 Somali civilians killed in attack on presidential guard

Dozens more were wounded when Islamist forces attacked guards protecting the presidential palace in Mogadishu on Friday, sparking clashes. Witnesses said at least 12 other people were wounded in incidents across the same district.


Islamist forces attacked guards protecting the Somali presidential palace Friday sparking clashes in which eight civilians were killed, witnesses told AFP.

Dozens were wounded in the violence in the capital's Wardhigley neighbourhood, where government forces tasked with protecting the presidential palace have a base.

Ruqiyo Sheikh Osman said her daughter and her three children were killed when a mortar shell hit the family's home. Other residents said another four people were killed in clashes in another part of the same neighbourhood.

"Four people, including a child, died in a house close to mine. Three of them were killed by a mortar shell and another by a stray bullet," eyewitness Hasan Mohamed said.

According to witnesses, at least 12 other people were injured in several incidents across the district.

Civilians have become the main victims of mounting violence in the Somali capital as Islamists target the transitional government and their Ethiopian military allies.

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