1 October 2009

Somalia: 5 Killed in Mogadishu Market Shelling

Mogadishu — Witnesses at Mogadishu's Bakara Market said 3 people were killed inside the market when shells hit a section of the market where vegetables are sold. One of the victims was a female, the witnesses added.

"A shell hit a shop, where the woman customer was buying food but died. Also, a young businessman was killed and we do not where the shell came from," said a Bakara trader named Ali Omar.

Another shell hit a location close to Bakara Market, killing 2 civilians but there were no further details available. Most shops at Bakara were closed after shells rained down on the market, he added.

Local sources said at least 6 civilians were wounded during the shelling. No group claimed responsiblity for the violence.

On Tuesday, 12 civilians were killed at Bakara after the market was shelled. African Union peacekeepers (AMISOM), who were accused of shelling the market, rejected the accusations.

But Somali Information Minister Dahir Mohamud Ghelle said Somali government officials had "spoken with AMISOM commanders" regarding the deadly incident.

Somali government forces and AMISOM peacekeepers are defending against Islamist rebel factions Al Shabaab and Hizbul Islam, who are fighting to topple the Horn of Africa country's UN-recognized interim government.

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