At least Nine people were killed and others wounded when a suicide car bombing targeted a security checkpoint near the presidential palace in Mogadishu on Saturday morning, officials said.
“What we know about the attack is that a suicide car bomb blast targeted one of our security checkpoints in Mogadishu, killing at least 9 people,” Ibrahim Hassan, a police officer, told Gargaar.net over the phone.
Ten others, including a lawmaker and municipality official, were rushed to hospitals for treatment, he added.
A second bomb blast hit the same area half and hour later sending thick white smoke billowing into the sky, said a police officer who did not wish to be named.
London-based Somali journalist Awil Dahir also died in the blast, Information Minister Dahir Mohamud Gelle confirmed.
Local media reported that Mohamed Tulleh, deputy governor of Banaadir region in which Mogadishu is located, is among the casualties.
Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the bomb attacks in an online statement.