SA slams terrorist attacks in Somalia

16 April 2013

The South African government has condemned Sunday’s terrorist attacks in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.

Pretoria said the abhorrent acts of terror, which left more than 34 civilians dead and 58 others injured, had no justification.

“It is deeply despairing that the attacks occurred just as Somalia is beginning to show clear signs of a return to normalcy following the 22-year long conflict,” International Relations and Cooperation spokesperson Clayson Monyela said on Monday.

Monyela said the South African government sent condolences to the government and people of Somalia, as well as to the families of the deceased.

He called on “all armed groups, particularly Al-Shabaab, to renounce violence and engage the legitimate government of President Hassan Mohamoud in a constructive manner towards peace and reconciliation, with a view to finding a lasting solution to the conflict”.

The first attack on Sunday targeted the newly formed magistrate’s court in Mogadishu. Nine attackers, wearing uniforms and posing as government officials, detonated explosive vests, while others opened gunfire on civilians, leaving 29 dead.

A second attack followed shortly thereafter, targeting a Turkish aid convoy that was in Somalia to help the Somali population. This attack killed five people.

The bombings came a week after international warnings of imminent attacks by extremist group Al-Shabaab in different parts of Somalia.