Increase in number of fatalities following suicide attack in Hiiraan region
Beledweyne (AX) – Officials have confirmed that the death toll from the recent al Shabab suicide bombing in the Jalalaqsi district of the Hiiraan region has risen to eight people. Jalalaqsi district commissioner, Nor Mohamed Nor Dhere, stated that among the victims were his own bodyguards, while over ten others sustained injuries.
The attack occurred on Thursday afternoon when a suicide bomber detonated an explosive vest at a tea shop where Nor Dhere was present. Nor Dhere emphasized that the bomber’s intention was to target him, as the explosion happened near the chair he had just vacated moments before the blast. Witnesses revealed that one of the commissioner’s bodyguards shot at the attacker before the bomb went off, resulting in the bodyguard’s death.
Furthermore, the district commissioner confirmed that security forces had apprehended a suspect who is believed to have guided the suicide bomber.
“By the grace of Allah, I was spared from the explosion. The person sitting in the chair I had recently occupied was among those who lost their lives. We have detained an individual who appeared to be directing the bomber’s actions. This person had been circling around me approximately ten times before the explosion. Afterwards, he seemed to be assessing the casualties. Although it is not easy for strangers to enter our district, it seems that someone else facilitated the bomber’s arrival here,” added Nor.
While al-Shabab has been pushed out of major cities and towns in Somalia, they still hold sway over vast rural areas and persist in launching attacks against security forces and innocent civilians, including in the capital.