Somalia: Mogadishu holds mini marathon after car bomb blast
MOGADISHU, Somalia - Hundreds of runners, men, and women participated in a mini-marathon in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu on Friday running one of the most dangerous roads in the world, Garowe Online reports.
The annual contest which marks the second in more than two decades attracted thousands to watch the 3.5-kilometer-race started from K-4 junction and ended up at Daljir Dahsoon, the most insecure street in the seaside city.
The Sports minister, Khadija Mohamed and Mogadishu mayor, Abdirahman Omar who took part in the event said the game is meant to mark the International Day of Sport for peace which is held every year.
The city was placed on lockdown and security was tight with additional security forces deployed on the main streets during the race to avert the terror threat.
Abdinur Mohamed Garad running for the capital's Kaaraan district emerged the winner while a female athlete Maryam Nuh Muse scooped the second position, according to the event Organizers.
A car bomb exploded outside a Police training academy in the capital on Thursday evening hours before the mini-marathon.
The blast which was claimed by Al-Shabaab left at least two people dead and wounded at least eight others who were admitted to hospitals.
Many of the stadiums in Mogadishu had been turned into military spaces under al Shabaab, and sporting events were banned, as they were deemed to be “un-Islamic” by the militants.
Al Qaeda-linked group frequently carries out car bombings and other attacks in Mogadishu in a campaign to topple Western-backed Federal government.