A car bomb in Mogadishu killed four on Saturday. Al Shabaab, the Somali militant group, has claimed responsibility for the attack as well as an earlier attack targeting a lawmaker near the Parliament building in Somalia’s capital.
Al Shabaab, classified as a terrorist group by the U.S. Department of State, is reportedly targeting lawmakers and Parliament members in its most recent attacks, reports Associated Press. The car bomb exploded at a checkpoint near the Parliament building, killing two soldiers and two refugees.
Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, spokesman for Al Shabaab, said, “This is our second attack against the Parliament building and we shall continue it,” reports Reuters. The first attack killed a lawmaker and his bodyguard targeted by Al Shabaab while also wounding two other Parliament members on Thursday. On Wednesday, the U.S. revealed it had established a secret military presence in the country since 2007 and will continue to provide assistance in Somalia. Al Shabaab did not identify a target for the attack and lawmakers inside the Parliament building were not injured, notes Reuters.
According to Reuters, Al Shabaab wants to overthrow the government in Somalia and impose sharia. Musab, speaking to Reuters, said, "The so-called lawmakers are the ones who brought the enemy Christians into our country. We shall continue killing the legislators in bundles." The militant group claimed responsibility for the attack at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall in 2013 which killed 67 people. In June, Al Shabaab engaged in several attacks in Kenya's coastal region that killed 64 people. The group has supported attacks in Kenya and Uganda, notes AP.