Somalia: Car bomb explodes outside Mogadishu restaurant, casualties rise

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At least 11 people were feared dead and 6 more other people injured in an explosion outside a restaurant in Mogadishu, Police and witnesses said.

A car laden with explosives parked outside the Banoda coffee shop adjacent to central Hotel in Mogadishu, killing at least 11 people on Tuesday and injuring scores of others, according to witnesses at the scene.

Somali security officers are seen in front of the Central Hotel in Mogadishu, Somalia, 20 February 2015

The BBC’s Moalimu Mohammed in Mogadishu says 11 people have been confirmed dead in the explosion and others have been seriously injured.

Banooda restaurant is in front of the Central Hotel, which is often frequented by politicians.

Militants from the al-Shabab Islamist group often attack hotels, restaurants and government complexes in the city.

“A vehicle loaded with explosives was parked outside the restaurant,” police officer Ahmed Warhere told the AFP news agency.

No one claimed responsibility for the attack on Banoda restaurant yet.

Our reporter says ambulances rushed to the scene, where there is blood and wreckage everywhere, to help the injured.

At least 20 people, including senior officials, were killed in an al-Shabab attack on the Central Hotel in February.

The al-Qaeda-linked insurgents oppose the UN-backed administration and want African Union forces to leave Somalia.

On Monday, al-Shabab said it was behind the bombing of a UN vehicle in Garowe, the main city in the north-eastern Puntland region, that killed seven people.

Al-Shabab has been pushed out of the main towns it once controlled but still controls rural areas of the south.

Earlier this month, Somalia placed a bounty on the top 11 leaders of the group.

Shabelle/BBC

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