Somalia Bombings Kill 9 at Gov't HQ

Somalia Bombings Kill 9 at Gov't HQ

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) -- A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle at the gates of a local government headquarters in Somalia while another bomber targeted a marketplace, killing at least nine people, police said Sunday.

Abdisalam Yusuf said one bomber rammed the car into a checkpoint in Galkayo town Sunday morning after reaching the main gate of Puntland's local government. Puntland, a semi-autonomous state in northern Somalia, controls the northern part of the town, while the southern part is controlled by rival regional state Galmudug.

Yusuf said gunfire could be heard, but it was unclear whether gunmen were involved in the attack.

The targeting of the crowded market raised the possibility that the death toll could climb.

"Death toll has now risen to nine; more than 15 others were also injured," said Col. Muse Hassan, a police officer, by telephone from the town.

The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab group claimed responsibility for the attack. The town, unlike other parts of the country where al-Shabab continues a deadly campaign, rarely sees such attacks.

(KA)