Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Somalia: Al-Shaba'ab attacks UN compound

So far a dozen are dead, some Somali military and some jihadists but don't worry, it has nothing to do with Islam.  Al-Shaba'ab are just trying to drive those pesky colonialists out of their land so they can live peacefully and in harmony with the rest of mankind.

From MSN June 19 by Abdi Guled

5 Somalis, 7 militants die in attack on UN office
MOGADISHU, Somalia — Al-Qaida-linked militants detonated multiple bomb blasts and breached the main U.N. compound in Mogadishu Wednesday, sparking gun battles with security forces that killed at least 12 people. U.N. personnel who reached the compound's secure bunker all survived, though officials hinted not all reached that bunker.

An ambulance driver said that five Somali civilians were killed and an Associated Press reporter who went inside the U.N. compound after the battle saw two dead bodies of what appeared to be al-Shabab attackers wearing Somali military uniforms. An official said seven attackers died in total.

Ben Parker, a spokesman for the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia, said that a first explosion was detonated at 11:30 a.m. and that at least two others followed. Dozens of staff from U.N. humanitarian and development agencies were in the compound and many moved to a secure bunker, he said.

African Union and Somali security forces responded and took control of the compound about an hour later. The U.N. staff who sought refuge in the bunker were then evacuated to the secure military base and airport complex across the street, Parker said.

Parker was then asked if that meant all U.N. people survived: "Assuming that people got to the safe area," he said. "There was not very much time to get into the safe area."

A second U.N. official who could not be named because he is not an official spokesman indicated an announcement of U.N. casualties was upcoming. A third U.N. official said he believed four U.N. workers were killed, including one Kenyan, one Somali and two South Africans. The official said seven attackers died.

Several U.N. guards were believed to have also been wounded, or worse. Both U.N. officials insisted on anonymity because they are not official spokesmen.

Mohamed Ali, an ambulance driver, said he transported five dead civilian bodies and 10 people who were wounded.

Somali Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon said he was appalled that "our friends and partners" at the U.N. who are carrying out humanitarian activities would be the victims "of such barbaric violence." An African Union official, Mahamet Saleh Annadif, condemned the "cowardly" attack and sent condolences "to those who had lost loved ones."

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