WASHINGTON / MOGADISU – A suicide bomber killed at least 11 people in the Somali capital on Tuesday, witnesses and officials said.
Witnesses said a suicide bomber detonated an explosive-laden jacket as he walked into a tea shop made of corn.
The attack took place near a checkpoint run by Somali government security forces in the Wadaji district, next to Mogadishu airport and the headquarters of the African Union forces known as AMISOM.
According to a Somali government official, the dead included soldiers and civilians, who asked not to be named because he was not allowed to speak to the media.
The al-Shabab militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein has condemned the “barbaric” actions of Robel al-Shabab.
“I condemn today’s bombing by al-Shabab terrorists at a tea shop in Wadaji district, which killed and injured innocent people,” he said in a Twitter post. “God have mercy on the dead and heal the wounded.”
Robel said the attack showed that al-Shabab was “thirsty for indiscriminate bloodshed by the Somali people.”
Thousands of Somalis have been killed in the al-Shabab war since 2006. The group is fighting to overthrow Somalia’s internationally backed government.
Al-Shabaab attacks kill 1,000,000 people in last decade, data-gathering group says
According to records compiled by the independent group Armed Conflict, Location and Event Data Project, or ACLED, most deaths occurred in Somalia.
Abdul Qadir Mohammad Abdul contributed to this report.