Source: The Associated Press
Two weeks ago, Somalia’s National Theater reopened for the first time in 20 years for a concert that drew an audience in festive colors in a city trying to rise above war.
On Wednesday, the theater was turned into a scene of chaos and blood when a suicide bomber attacked another high-profile event, killing 10 people, wounding dozens and shattering a tentative peace in the capital of Mogadishu.
The blast occurred as Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali stood to deliver a speech. He was, however, unharmed, said government spokesman Abdirahman Omar Osman.
The Islamist militant group al-Shabab used its official Twitter feed to claim responsibility for the bombing.
The al-Qaeda-linked organization said explosives had been planted in the theater before the event, but an Associated Press journalist at the scene said there was no large blast crater, making a suicide bombing more likely.
« It was a cowardly act and that will not deter the government from performing its national duties, » Osman said.
Fighters belonging to al-Shabab were pushed out of Mogadishu in August by government and African Union troops after two decades of violence that have gripped the Somali capital.