MOGADISHU, Somalia – At least five people, including senior regional officials, were killed in a roadside bomb explosion in Bal’ad town, some 30km north of the Somali capital, Mogadishu.
The explosion targeted a vehicle carrying officials from Middle Shabelle region, a witness said.
He says the victims included Former Hirshabelle state business minister Sabrie Osman Tohobow, current Deputy regional finance chief Abdullahi Shitaawe and a humanitarian worker identified as Hassan Baldoos.
Somali armed group al Shabaab claimed the responsibility for Saturday’s explosion.
The group was pushed out of Mogadishu capital in 2011 by Somali army troops and 22,000-strong African Union force in Somalia.
The rebel group also lost most of their strongholds, but it still controls large rural areas and remains the key threat to peace in Somalia.
The al Qaeda linked group has been fighting for over ten years to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Somalia.