Suicide bomber kills three Somali government ministers
It had to happen. And now it has. A suicide bomber dressed as a veiled woman killed some 20 people, including three Somali government ministers, at a university graduation ceremony in a Mogadishu hotel. This comes after a surge in fighting in the past six months between some 5,000 African Union peacekeepers, who protect Somalia’s fragile UN-backed government, and radical Islamist al-Shabaab militants. The US says al-Shabaab is linked to al-Qaeda. Certainly their methods appear very similar. In October, Somali President Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed's plane was twice attacked by rebels in the same week, as he left for or arrived from foreign visits. The militants missed, but ensuing mortar and artillery fire killed dozens of civilians in Mogadishu, where AU forces suffered earlier twin suicide bomb attacks that killed scores of troops. The killing of Somalia’s health, education and higher education ministers follows an attack in June that killed the country’s security minister and at least 30 other people. Bethuel Kiplagat, Kenya's special envoy to the Somalia peace process from 2003 to 2005 says there's a worry al-Qaeda may be looking at Somalia as a new sanctuary. Many think it already is. Read more: Reuters, BBC, The Huffington Post
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