According to Garowe Online, the blast hit the Sayidka junction on the main road towards the palace. The news outlet also reported that the explosion occurred at 9:00 a.m. local time (06:00 GMT) and was followed by gunfire. At the moment, no further details have been provided.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far.
PHOTOS: Twisted remains of vehicles and rickshaws damaged in the VBIED attack. The checkpoint at Sayidka junction is strategic, it links the city to a secure compound housing the federal parliament, presidential palace and other important government agencies. pic.twitter.com/ZkYZb55JmI— Abdulaziz Billow Ali (@AbdulBillowAli) February 13, 2021
🇸🇴 ALERTE INFO - Un véhicule a explosé à #Mogadiscio, capitale de la #Somalie, non loin du palais présidentiel. Plusieurs personnes sont mortes dans l'explosion. Le bilan n'a pas encore été confirmé par les autorités. (CNN) #Mogadishupic.twitter.com/qKn1E0fYMw— Mediavenir (@Mediavenir) February 13, 2021
Commenting on the incident, government spokesperson Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu said the suicide attacker was killed by soldiers, and no one died except for the perpetrator, noting that 6 Somalis were injured by the blast.
The terrorists' plan was to kill many civilians. The security forces are commended for their vigilance. Government leaders urge security forces should redouble their efforts to strengthen security in the capital & in the country in general, as the country prepares for elections.— Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu (@MOALIMUU) February 13, 2021
Two weeks ago, the capital of the African country was targeted by a suicide car bombing and gunfire attack that claimed at least 17 people. The Al-Shabaab radical Islamist group affiliated with al-Qaeda* claimed responsibility for that assault.
*Al-Qaeda is a terrorist organisation banned in Russia