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Al-Shabab Claims Responsibility for Uganda Bombings


The Somali militant group al-Shabab is claiming responsibility for the bombings in Uganda that killed dozens of soccer fans as they watched the World Cup final on television.

An al-Shabab spokesman (Sheikh Ali Mohamud Raghe) widely known as Ali Dheere told reporters the twin bomb blasts had been "months in the making." He said the attacks were revenge for Uganda's participation in a peacekeeping force in support of the Somali government, and that more attacks would follow.

Officials in Kampala raised their casualty count on Monday to 74 dead, most of whom died while watching the match on big-screen TVs at a rugby club. The rest were at an Ethiopian restaurant in a neighborhood popular with foreigners.

Al-Shabab had never before mounted a major terrorist attack outside Somalia.

World leaders condemned the attacks and pledged their support for the government of Uganda, which has thousands of troops in Somalia to defend the U.N.-backed government against al-Shabab and other militant groups. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni toured the sites of the attacks on Monday and vowed to pursue whoever was responsible.

A police spokesman said the government would identify the home countries of foreigners killed in the attacks later. The United States said one American aid worker was killed at the Ethiopian restaurant and several others were injured.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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