MOGADISHU: The death toll from the twin bomb attacks in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu has risen to 11 after three people died from their wounds, police said on Thursday.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which took place late on Wednesday, but it appeared to involve a commando of gunmen, and bore all the hallmarks of Somalia’s al-Qaeda-linked Shebab group.
“The number of dead is 11, with 18 others who were wounded,” police commander Abdi Mohamed Jama said.
“However, the situation is now back to normal, mine experts have cleared the area for any possible explosive devices.”
The first car bomb exploded outside the Jazeera hotel, near the international airport. It is one of the seaside capital’s most upmarket and its clientele includes Somali politicians and visiting foreign officials.
The second car bomb ripped through the blast scene as ambulances rushed in and Somali soldiers were helping the wounded.
Eyewitnesses also reported an intense exchange of gunfire between assailants and security officers between the back-to-back blasts.
But the police boasted that they had stopped the attackers from killing more.
“The terrorists failed to achieve their objective as security forces foiled their attacks,” Somali police spokesman Mohamed Omar told reporters, adding that two fellow officers were among the dead.