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Car bomber kills 7 in Somali capital

| Sunday, May 5, 2013, 10:00 p.m.

MOGADISHU, Somalia — Seven people were killed Sunday morning when a suicide bomber attempted to ram a car laden with explosives into a military convoy escorting a four-member Qatari delegation.

Gen. Garad Nor Abdulle, a senior police official, said the members of the Qatari delegation who were being escorted in the interior minister's convoy were unharmed and safely reached their hotel.

Abdulle said the interior minister was not in the convoy.

Mohamed Abdi, an officer at the scene of the blast, said four civilians and a soldier died immediately. Another two people died in a hospital, and 18 were being treated for wounds from the blast, said Dr. Duniya Mohamed Ali at the Medina hospital.

The Qatari delegates are involved in development projects in Mogadishu, Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said.

Mohamud blamed al-Qaida-linked Somali group al-Shabab for the attack. He said “suspects” have been arrested.

After the explosion, soldiers fired in the air to disperse crowds that gathered at the blast site at the busy KM4 junction.

Separately, four Somali soldiers were wounded Sunday when a roadside bomb struck a government vehicle in Deynile district, in Mogadishu's northwest, said Ali Jimale, a captain with the Somali police.

KM4 is among the busiest roads in Mogadishu, largely used by government officials and African Union forces.

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