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Somali Prime Minister Survives Suicide Bomb Attack

Somali Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid
Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid became Somaia's prime minister in October. Photographer: Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images

Somali Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid survived a suicide bomb blast by a former security agent which killed two guards outside his home, according to Information Minister Abdullahi Ilmoge Hersi.

The bomber was fired from his job at the national security agency, Ilmoge Hersi told reporters today in the capital, Mogadishu, where the attack took place.

“The suicide bomber attempted to breach the main security gate but was deterred by the fortified security forces stationed at the gate,” according to a government statement.

Somalia has had 10 different prime ministers over the past decade in a bid to bring stability to the country after 21 years of civil war. African troops are fighting alongside the government to win back territory from Islamist militants.

Over the past 12 months, troops with the African Union Mission in Somalia, or Amisom, and the Ethiopian military have removed al-Shabaab, a militia linked to al-Qaeda, from key areas including Mogadishu, the port of Kismayo and Baidoa, the nation’s second-largest city.

“The heroic actions of the dead soldier and his compatriots have saved many Somali lives,” said Mohamat Annadif, special representative of the African Union Commission chairman for Somalia. “Amisom is committed to continuing to support the Somali National Security Forces and to build up their capacity to defend the people of Somalia.”

Somali lawmakers in September elected Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud as president. Shirdon Saaid became prime minister in October.

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