Militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for a deadly car bomb explosion in Somalia's capital.
Authorities in Mogadishu tell VOA that at least six people were killed, including three Somali soldiers, and eight others were injured in Thursday's blast.
Daniel Maclsaac, a spokesman for the United Nations refugee agency, says the bomb appeared to target a U.N. convoy.
"A vehicle exploded close to a convoy of U.N. vehicles at about 12:30 there today. It was near the international airport in Mogadishu," he said. "The U.N. in Somalia strongly condemns the attack and expresses deep sorrow at the reported deaths and injuries of Somali bystanders."
Somali security sources tell VOA that the U.N. agency's representative, Alessandra Morelli, was traveling in one of the cars.
MacIsaac says no U.N. staffers were hurt in the blast.
Al-Shabab at one point controlled large parts of Somalia, but was pushed out of major cities by African Union forces and the Somali government.
The al-Qaida-linked group still carries out periodic attacks in Somalia, and also claimed responsibility for the attack on a Kenyan shopping mall last September that killed more than 60 people.
A motorcyclist rides away from the scene of an explosion near the entrance of the airport in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, Feb. 13, 2014.
A man talks on his mobile phone as he walks at the scene of an explosion near the entrance of the airport in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, Feb. 13, 2014.
Somali police walk around the scene of an explosion near the entrance of the airport in Mogadishu, Feb. 13, 2014.
A Somali soldier picks up debris near the wreckage of car bomb in Mogadishu, Feb,13, 2014.