Somali militant group claims bombing of Ethiopian Immigrants – By Aweys Yusuf, Reuters

February 7th, 2008 Print Print Email Email

MOGADISHU (Reuters) – A militant Somali Islamist group linked to al Qaeda claimed responsibility on Thursday for bombings that killed at least 20 Ethiopian immigrants in a northern Somali port earlier this week.

Regional officials confirmed that the al Shabaab militant group was responsible for the blasts on Tuesday night in the port of Bosasso in an area where Ethiopian immigrants congregate. Close to 100 people were wounded. (more…)

MOGADISHU (Reuters) – A militant Somali Islamist group linked to al Qaeda claimed responsibility on Thursday for bombings that killed at least 20 Ethiopian immigrants in a northern Somali port earlier this week.

Regional officials confirmed that the al Shabaab militant group was responsible for the blasts on Tuesday night in the port of Bosasso in an area where Ethiopian immigrants congregate. Close to 100 people were wounded.

Ethiopia’s military is helping the interim Somali government fight Islamist-led guerrillas in Mogadishu, and the rebels have long exploited the traditional rivalry between Muslim Somalia and the Horn of Africa neighbour seen as Christian-led.

The attack happened in the semi-autonomous northern Puntland region, a relatively peaceful part of Somalia that is home to President Abdullahi Yusuf and an ally.

The al Shabaab, in a message posted on their Web site, said the attack had targeted Ethiopian soldiers and that some of their wives and children had been killed.

“This is a message to the Puntland authority which had extended a welcome and showed affection to the long-time enemy Ethiopians,” the Web site, www.kataaib.net, said.

“Al Shabaab is informing Muslim society to keep away from the infidels of Ethiopia whether they are in military dress or not.”

The governor of Puntland’s Bari region, Muse Yusuf Gelle, said police had confirmed al Shabaab militants were responsible for the bombing but it did not hit its target.

“The victims were not Ethiopian soldiers. They were poor immigrants who either wanted to earn their daily bread here in Puntland or make a trip to Yemen,” he told Reuters.

Many Ethiopians risk the perilous passage across northern Somalia to reach the port at Bosasso and catch a boat across the Gulf of Aden in search of a better life in Yemen.

Thousands of Somalis and Ethiopians make the treacherous crossing every year and hundreds die when overloaded boats capsize or sink.

Al Shabaab was the hardline military wing of the Islamist movement that briefly controlled Mogadishu in the second half of 2006 and wanted to put Somalia under Islamic law until the government and Ethiopia defeated it.

“Al Shabaab is intending to wipe out peace in Puntland but that will not tolerated,” Gelle said.

Puntland’s government has links with U.S. and Ethiopian intelligence, and is considered an informal partner in the U.S. counter-terrorism strategy in the Horn.

Security officials have implicated al Shabaab members in the assassination of aid workers and a string of killings and bomb attacks in Mogadishu.

In Mogadishu, where the government and Ethiopia are fighting near-daily insurgent attacks, Islamist insurgents attacked a police station and two children died in the ensuing artillery barrage, residents said.

At least 6,500 people have been killed and 600,000 have fled the seaside Somali capital during a year-long insurgency.

  1. Damitew
    | #1

    It is crime meles zenawi hwo killed those Ethiopians not the somalians. This premitive tpllf and their families should get the same thing like those in somalia. The Kenyan situation hast be in addis too those woyane thugs must go back to the stony land of former tigaye not the recent one which anex most of amharas regin like humera, alamata, shiraro and so on. only the stony one and they can do what ever they want to do with almodin. The seike is also anti Islam he is not a sheik there is no drunk sheik.

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