News / Africa

Suicide Bombers Target New Somali President

Somalia's newly elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud gestures, surrounded by his security guards, during a news conference at Jazeera Palace hotel in Mogadishu September 12, 2012.
Somalia's newly elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud gestures, surrounded by his security guards, during a news conference at Jazeera Palace hotel in Mogadishu September 12, 2012.
Gabe Joselow
Three suicide bombers attacked a hotel Wednesday in downtown Mogadishu where newly-elected Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was meeting with a delegation from the Kenyan foreign ministry.  At least seven people were killed, including the bombers and at least one African Union soldier.

Kenyan Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Ongeri was reading a letter of congratulations from the Kenyan president, when the first bomber struck.

After the blast, a second suicide bomber tried to rush through the gate of the Jazeera Palace hotel, but African Union officials say he was shot and killed by AU forces before he could detonate his explosives.

VOA's Gabe Joselow was reporting on the president's speech when the attack occured
VOA's Gabe Joselow was reporting on the president's speech when the attack occuredi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

Inside, on the top floor of the hotel, President Mohamud calmly continued his address to the Kenyan delegation and assembled members of the media.

“Things like what's happening now outside will continue for some time, but I'm sure and I'm confident it's the last things that's taking place here in Somalia," he said.  "We have been hearing such events frequently, but this is a special case.  We didn't hear it for the last couple of months even.”

Minutes later, another bomber struck on the opposite side of the hotel, which is just down the street from the Mogadishu airport and the African Union and United Nations compounds in the capital.



The Somali militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for the attack.

The al-Qaida-linked militants controlled most of Mogadishu for a few years until the AU force, known as AMISOM, pushed the militants out of capital city just over a year ago.

Since then, the group has changed tactics, resorting to hit-and-run guerilla attacks, including suicide bombings and the use of improvised explosive devices.

Mohamud said security remains the top challenge for his administration.

“We are striving to get a Somalia that is peaceful within and peaceful with its neighbors and the rest of the world," the president said.  "Security is our main target, our priority number one, our priority number two and priority number three is security."

Mohamud, an academic and political moderate, was elected president Monday in an unexpected landslide victory over the incumbent president of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed.

The election was part of U.N. plan to create an effective central government in Somalia, after two decades of chaos and fighting.

You May Like

UN Fears Rights Violations in China-backed Projects

UNHCHR investigates link between financing development and ignoring safeguards for human rights More

Boko Haram Violence Tests Nigerians’ Faith in Buhari

New president has promised to stem insurgency; he’s scheduled to meet with President Obama at White House July 20 More

Social Media Network Wants Privacy in User’s Hands

Encryption's popularity in messaging is exploding; now it's the foundation of a new social network More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: hane from: dakar
September 13, 2012 6:18 AM
africa oh my god always africa, when our dream will be to see africa without war, lives in peace

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.

VOA Blogs