Deadly suicide attack hits Ethiopian army base in Somalia

MOGADISHU – The al Qaeda linked group Al Shabaab says it has carried out on Saturday a suicide attack on Ethiopian army base in Bardhere town, some 300 km (190 miles) east of Somali capital Mogadishu.

The attack comes after a new Ethiopian commander.  Lt. Gen. Tigabu Yilma Wondimhunegn took over African Union command in Somalia.

The attack started with a suicide car bomb detonated at the entrance of the army base in the town, leaving 16 soldiers dead, said in a statement released by Al Shabaab.

“We have carried out suicide attack on Ethiopian army base in Bardhere town. At least 16 soldiers were killed”, the group claimed through its website.

There was no immediate comment from Ethiopia or African Union mission based in Mogadishu over the claims.

The attack comes a week after Ethiopian military said it killed 31 Al Shabaab fighters in an air strike carried out in Burhakaba town.

The African Union Mission in Somalia has a new Force Commander.  Lt. Gen. Tigabu Yilma Wondimhunegn from Ethiopia took up office from Lt. Gen. Jim Beesigye Owoyesigire, who has served in that capacity since January 2018