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Page last updated at 13:40 GMT, Saturday, 1 May 2010 14:40 UK

Somali blasts kill 'at least 30 at militants mosque'

Relatives carry one of the victims of the blasts in Mogadishu. Photo: 1 May 2010
Most of the victims were worshippers, witnesses said

At least 30 people have been killed by two bomb blasts in a mosque in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, reports say.

More than 70 were injured in the explosions in the Bakara market.

One report said a senior member of the al-Shabab militia was the target. It was not immediately clear if Fuad Mohamed Khalaf survived the attack.

The Islamists, who are linked to al-Qaeda, are credited with having brought greater stability to the part of the country under their control.

'Militants' mosque'

"The blasts happened while people were sitting inside Abdala Shideye mosque, waiting for noon prayers. Most of those killed and wounded were worshippers," local businessman Ahmed Abdulle told the BBC.

Ismail Dahir, another witness, said: "The blasts went of within minutes of each other... I saw dead bodies lying on the floor [and] I could not count."

Map of Mogadishu
Islamists control large parts of Somalia

Some reports said Fuad Mohamed Khalaf, known Fuad Shongole, was injured.

No group has so far said it carried out the attack.

Abdalla Shideye mosque is often used by al-Shabab Islamists to deliver speeches.

On Tuesday, a landmine killed one person at the Abu Hureya mosque in the same area.

Somalia has been wracked by civil conflict since 1991.

In recent years, hardline Islamists have taken control of large parts of southern Somalia.

The main al-Shabab group says it is fighting the weak UN-backed government to make Somalia an Islamic state.

The transitional government - which controls only parts of the capital with the help of African peacekeepers - also wants Islamic law imposed, but al-Shabab's interpretation of Sharia has been very strict.



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