Mogadishu: The blast on Thursday in Lafole, which is around 20 km west of Mogadishu, struck as the bus was passing by. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. “All the 18 people on board the minibus are dead and burnt. A remotely controlled bomb along the road exploded,” Abidkadir Mohamed, a police officer at the scene, said.
Nur Ahmed, who was driving along the same road, said that the minibus was being escorted by a truck carrying government troops. The government car escaped undamaged, he said. The explosion comes less than a week after an attack on a hotel by the al-Shabab armed group in Mogadishu that killed at least 15 people.
Shabaab jihadists were chased out of Mogadishu in 2011 but remain a dangerous threat in both Somalia and neighboring Kenya, where they carry out frequent attacks.