Plane carrying wounded Somalis lands in Turkey

Ankara (AFP) –


People wounded in the weekend's massive bombing in Somalia -- the deadliest ever attack to hit the conflict-torn nation -- were flown to Turkey on Monday for treatment, an AFP photographer said.

The Turkish military plane carrying 35 wounded Somalis landed at an Ankara airport, where ambulances were at the ready to rush the victims to hospital.

Turkey strongly condemned Saturday's bombing in Mogadishu which killed at least 276 people and left 300 injured.

The blast occurred at a junction in Hodan, a bustling commercial district of the capital Mogadishu which has many shops, hotels and businesses.

Turkey sent planes with medical supplies in the wake of the attack, and Health Minister Ahmet Demircan was in Mogadishu on Monday to coordinate the transfer of the injured.

Turkey is a leading donor and investor in Somalia.

In September, it inaugurated the largest foreign-run military training centre in Somalia, where local troops are due to take over the protection of a nation threatened by Shabaab jihadists.

There has been no immediate claim of responsibility, but the Shabaab, a militant group aligned with Al-Qaeda, has carried out dozens of suicide bombings in its bid to overthrow Somalia's internationally-backed government.