At least six people including a local official were killed in a car bombing in Mogadishu, witnesses and security officials said on Saturday.
Abdikafi Hilowle Osman, a former member's of Mogadishu's local government, and three of his escorts were killed when a bomb concealed in their car exploded at a busy junction, authorities said.
Two civilians are also killed in the blast. "It was a powerful explosion that totally destroyed the victim's car," said a security official who asked to remain unnamed, adding that investigations were under way.
Al-shabaab, a militant cell affiliated with At-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack, the pro-militant website Somali Memo reported.
Security officials in Mogadishu told dpa that they had thwarted two other attempted attacks earlier on Saturday. One of the bombs was concealed in a Somali lawmaker's car in Mogadishu's Hamarwayne district.