At least six people were killed and more than 12 injured after a car bomb exploded in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Sunday, reported Reuters. The suicide attack took place outside a local government office in the centre of the city.

Police officer Mohamed Hussein confirmed six fatalities, which included soldiers, civilians and the suicide bomber.

The bomber attempted to drive through a checkpoint but was stopped by security forces. This prompted the bomber to detonate the explosives-laden car near the building, Al Jazeera quoted Hussein as saying.

The explosion destroyed the Hawlwadag district office, a school opposite the building, and a few homes in the vicinity. Most students in the school were away from the building for a break when the blast occurred.

Islamist militant group Al Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack. “We targeted the district office in which there was a meeting,” said Abdiasis Abu Musab, the group’s military operations spokesperson. “We killed 10 people so far, we shall give details later.” The group, an affiliate of the al-Qaeda, has been fighting to overthrow the United Nations-backed government in Mogadishu, which was established in 2012.

While the Al Shabaab has been driven out of many cities, it controls areas in rural pockets, according to the BBC. It has imposed a strict version of Sharia in places under its control, including amputating the hands of thieves and stoning to death women accused of adultery.