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Blast kills at least 5 people in Somali market
May 10, 2018
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MOGADISHU: An explosion killed at least five people and wounded 10 on Wednesday in a market for the stimulant leaf khat in southern Somalia, police and residents said.

The blast, whose cause was not immediately clear, occurred in the busy market in the town of Wanlaweyn in the Lower Shabelle region, about 90km to the northwest of the coastal capital Mogadishu.

Given Wanlaweyn’s lack of hospitals able to take in multiple casualties, residents said they took many of the wounded to their homes for the time being after the afternoon blast near a busy cluster of khat kiosks.

Police said they were investigating whether the explosion was caused by a planted bomb or by a suicide bomber.

“The blast at the khat kiosks killed at least five civilians and injured more others including soldiers. We are investigating whether there are more casualties and the cause of the blast,” police Captain Farah Ismail said.

“The death toll may rise,” he added.

Residents said the kiosks were busy with soldiers buying khat.

“I counted five dead people, including two shoe shiners, a mother who sold khat and two customers. There were 10 other injured civilians,” shopkeeper Ahmed Mohamud said.

“I could also see several soldiers in uniform being transported from the blast scene but I could not confirm whether they were dead or wounded.”

It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast.

Meanwile, Somalia’s Al Shabaab insurgents stoned to death on Wednesday a woman it accused of having multiple husbands, residents of a town in the south of the country said.

Residents of Sablale town in Lower Shabelle region gathered to witness the stoning of the woman, Shukri Abdullahi, 30, who allegedly had 11 husbands.

“Shukri Abdullahi and nine husbands, including her legal husband, were brought at the court, each saying she was his wife,” Mohamed Abu Usama, al Shabaab’s governor for the Lower Shabelle regionsaid.

Al Shabaab is fighting to impose its own rule in Somalia.

Courts set up by the militants do not allow legal representation or appeals.

Its members have handed out brutal punishments for religious infractions, including hacking limbs for alleged thieves.

Stoning suspected adulterers in one such punishment; the accused is buried neck-deep and then killed by rocks thrown by a crowd. Both men and women have been stoned .

Reuters
 

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