The toll in the twin bomb explosions, which ripped through Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu on October 14, rose to 358 on Friday, reported AP. Somalia Information Minister Abdirahman Osman said 56 people were still missing, 228 were wounded and 122 had been airlifted for treatment in Turkey, Sudan and Kenya.
Somalian President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed will announce a “state of war” against the al-Shabab group, which is believed to be behind the attack, the country’s prime minister, Hassan Ali Khayre said.
Somali Army spokesperson Abdullahi Iman said they would try to push al-Shabab militants out of their strongholds in lower and middle Shabelle regions. These two areas have been used to launch many attacks on Mogadishu in the past.
An unidentified Somalian military official said the United States would support the Somali forces’ initiative against al-Shabab. Though there has been no confirmation from Washington, the US military on Friday said it had resumed its campaign against al-Shabab with a drone strike.
The twin blasts
Two blasts had rocked Somalia on October 14. The police said a truck bomb had first exploded outside a hotel at the busy K5 intersection where several government offices, restaurants and kiosks are located. It destroyed buildings and set dozens of vehicles on fire. Two hours later, the second explosion shook Mogadishu’s Medina district.
The blasts were described as the deadliest attacks in Somalia since an Islamist insurgency began in the country in 2007. The president declared three days of mourning from October 15.