by Josh Manning – Staff Writer
Two trucks carrying lethal explosives were blown up in a terrorist attack in Mogadishu, the capital city of Somalia. The most recent statistics of the incident were 358 confirmed dead, 56 still missing, 226 injured. Nobody has yet claimed responsibility for this attack, and investigations are still underway in search for survivors. The first explosion was responsible for most of the casualties as well as responsible for much structural damage, destroying many stalls and hotels in the center of the city.
Mohammed Abdullahi Mohammed, the president of Somalia, issued a statement on twitter about the event, saying that “Today’s horrific attack proves our enemy will stop at nothing to cause our people pain and suffering. Let’s unite against terror”. President Donald Trump has so far declined to comment on the situation in Somalia. American troops in Somalia have been looking to give training to the Somali forces. James Mattis, Secretary of Defense of the United States stated that the objective of the United States involvement in Somalia was to “buy time” for Somalian government to build up its own security.
Medical responders on the scene issued statements on the severity of the issue. The Aamin Ambulance Services on twitter said, “In our 10-year experience as the first responder in Mogadishu, we haven’t seen anything like this”. Mohamed Yusuf, the director of Medina Hospital in which a great number of injured were taken, said “This is really horrendous, unlike any other time in the past”. The victims of the attack were described to have been “burned beyond recognition” and some were said to be missing several limbs.
The Mogadishu bombing has been claimed to be one of the deadliest events to take place in sub-Saharan Africa as of recently. CNBC said in their article that this attack was “larger than the Garissa University attack in Kenya in 2015 and the U.S. Embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998”.
The victims of the attack were devastated. Zainab Sharif was a mother who was affected by the attack, she said “There’s nothing we can say. We have lost everything”. Shopkeeper Abdullahi Omar said “I closed my shop and ran away” and “We still have much fear and still the shock is persisting in our minds”.
Al-Shabab terrorism is nothing new to the world, it has been fought against by African Union troops and American counterterrorism efforts ever since 2007 and this event appears to be another bloody chapter of the story. The counterterrorism efforts of the United States have been promised to be expanded under President Trump and whether the fruits of that promise will manifest themselves is still a mystery.