Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today condemned in the strongest terms an attack on the seat of the Somali Government in the capital, Mogadishu, and urged the authorities and people to fight against extremism.
In a statement from his spokesperson in New York, Mr. Ban paid tribute to the Somali National Forces and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) for their "efficient and professional response" in repelling the attackers from the palace, known as Villa Somalia.
The UN chief also reached out to the families of the killed, expressing his condolences, and wishing the injured a speedy recovery.
Somalia's Al-Shabaab insurgent group has claimed responsibility, according to media reports.
The attack comes just days after Al-Shabaab insurgents allegedly launched an attack near a UN convoy near the Mogadishu airport.
In today's statement, Mr. Ban said he was concerned that the recent attacks perpetrated by Al Shabaab "are clearly aimed at destabilizing the country at a time when many efforts are being mobilized to restore peace and development."
He reiterated the UN's "unwavering" support for efforts to build a peaceful and stable Somalia.
In addition to UN agencies in the country, the UN political mission known as UNSOM is based out of Mogadishu, mandated by the Security Council to support State building and peacebuilding with a focus on good governance, security sector reform, rule of law, human rights, providing "good offices" for mediation and political reconciliation and coordination of international assistance.