East African Regional bloc IGAD and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) condemned the twin bomb attacks which occurred in Mogadishu on Saturday morning.

At least 13 people were killed and 17 wounded in a car bomb attack claimed by al Qaeda-linked group al Shabaab close to the president’s residence..A second explosion followed nearby.

“We join the resilient people and the Federal Government of Somalia in condemning this horrendous act of terror, and send our sincere condolences to the families of the victims and wish a speedy recovery to the wounded,” said MahboubMaalim, Executive Secretary of IGAD.

Amisom too condemned the attacks and said they will not deter efforts by international community to stabilize the Horn of Africa nation.

These attacks by al-Shabab will not change the course of progress happening in Somalia, said Francisco Madeira, head of AMISOM,.

Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the explosions. Among the fatalities was a prominent Somali journalist with the London-based Universal Television.

The al Qaeda-linked group carries out frequent attacks in Mogadishu. Its members want to dislodge the government and impose its rule based on its own strict interpretation of Islam’s sharia law.

The group was forced from Mogadishu in 2011 but maintains a foothold in some regions. It has killed thousands of Somalis and hundreds of civilians across East Africa in a decade-long insurgency. (Daily Monitor)