Twin Al-Shabaab morning car bomb attack targets Somalia
DHUSAMAREB, Somalia - Two twin explosions targeted Dhusamareb town on Thursday morning, the regional administrative capital of Galmadug, where President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has been temporarily operating from as he steers the final assault on the Al-Shabaab militants across the country.
One of the explosions targeted the road leading to the town's main airport, which is said to be busy given the number of dignitaries and military officers who use it. The attackers used a car to detonate bombs along the route, causing massive damages on the way according to eyewitnesses.
The second SVBIED targeted the checkpoint within the town, forcing soldiers to fire indiscriminately as they pursued the attackers, witnesses added. The attack caused massive damage to property but there is no official confirmation of the number of casualties, sources said.
While the planners are yet to be exposed, embattled Al-Shabaab militants engineered the attack given the recent crackdown targeting them in central regions. The Somali National Army [SNA] has been moving around pursuing the militants in Galmadug and HirShabelle states.
Interestingly, Dhusamareb has been the temporary base of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud as he continues mobilizations against al-Shabaab. The al-Shabaab militant group claimed responsibility for the two explosions but did not immediately reveal their target at the time of going on air.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has been mobilizing security forces and local militia in the fight against Al-Shabaab, noting that the combing exercise in central areas will liberate towns that were not recovered during the operation. The second phase of operations will target Jubaland and Southwest.
The country recently wrote to the United Nations Security Council, asking for a technical pause of withdrawal of the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS]. The African mission troops have started gradual withdrawal in compliance with the Somali Transition Plan [STP].
However, the government of Somalia is optimistic that the ongoing crackdown against Al-Shabaab will yield fruits, particularly in central regions and southern Somalia, given the level of resilience and commitment from members of the public who are working closely with the Somali National Army.