At least four people including the governor of Mudug, a region in Somalia’s semi-autonomous state of Puntland were killed in a suicide bomb attack, witnesses said, in an attack claimed by the Al-Qaeda linked group al-Shabaab.
The attack on Ahmed Muse Nur, governor of Mudug region, happened in the regional capital of Galka’yo on Sunday, May 17. Officials said.
A suicide bomber driving explosives-laden motorized cycle rammed into the governor’s vehicle outside the headquarters of Mudug region killing him and three of his bodyguards instantly. Said a witness.
“We heard a huge blast and soon clouds of smoke went into the air. Before the blast, the governor accompanied by his bodyguards were seen moving out of the regional headquarter” added another witness.
Security officials have confirmed that the explosion was very strong and has caused serious damages.
In late March, the governor of Nugaal region in Somalia’s Puntland state was also killed in similar circumstances.
Alshabab claimed full responsibility for the bomb attack that left the governor dead through a statement posted on its affiliated media online sites.
“The governor of the apostate administration in the Mudug region was killed in a martyrdom operation in Galkayo today.” Alshabab said in a statement.
The militant group, together with a branch of the Islamic State in the country, operate in Bari Regin’s Golis mountain ranges. Both groups have been carrying out attacks and assassinations against Puntland security forces, who have been struggling to expel the militants from the region.
Al Shabaab frequently carries out bombings to try to undermine Somalia’s central government, which is backed by the United Nations and African Union peacekeeping troops.
The most deadly attack blamed on al Shabaab was in 2017 when a truck bomb exploded next to a fuel tanker in Mogadishu, killing nearly 600.