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Mogadishu Car Bomb Blast Kills 5

A Somali woman looks at the wreckage of a vehicle near the scene of an explosion in Mogadishu, Somalia, March 7, 2019.

At least five people were killed and nine others injured Thursday in a car bomb blast outside a restaurant in Mogadishu, near Somalia's presidential palace.

Casualty totals come from security officials and the owner of the Dalsan restaurant, where the explosion occurred. The owner told VOA's Somali service the blast came from an "explosives-laden car" parked on the street.

The restaurant is frequented by government soldiers who control one of the security checkpoints for the presidential palace, located about half a kilometer away from the blast scene.

"We have taken nine injured people [to hospitals], some of them in critical condition,” Amin Ambulance, the city’s only emergency medical responders, told VOA.

Al-Shabab militants have claimed the responsibility for the explosion, saying they killed at least six government soldiers.

The blast comes a week after two suicide car bombs exploded in the city, killing at least 30 people and injuring another 140.