Somalia: Car Bomb in Mogadishu Kills Three

The blast comes a week after the city was hit with a car bomb that killed 81 people. Witnesses reported seeing a thick plume of smoke and burning vehicles in the city.

A car bomb exploded near a checkpoint in the Somali capital of Mogadishu on Wednesday, leaving at least three people dead and six others wounded, police said.

Witnesses described a plume of thick black smoke over the city and said multiple vehicles were on fire. Buildings were also damaged.

Islamist militant group al-Shabab claimed the attack via its Andalus radio station, claiming it had killed several government troops and officials.

Police officer Adan Abdullahi told AFP: "Explosives were packed in a vehicle which the security forces think was trying to pass through the checkpoint, but because he could not do that, the suicide bomber detonated it."

The blast near the Somali parliament comes 11 days after the city was hit with a car bombing, also initiated by al-Shabab, that killed 81 people. Al-Shabab, which has links to the international al-Qaeda terrorism network, has been expanding its influence in the Horn of Africa in recent years.

The December 28 attack was the deadliest in the country in more than two years.

On Sunday, jihadists stormed a military base in Kenya used by US forces. Three US military personnel were killed in the attack.

lc/stb (Reuters, AFP, dpa)

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