Mogadishu, Somalia — Abbas Abdullahi Sheikh Siraji, Somalia’s Minister of Public Works and Reconstruction, was shot and killed near the entrance to the Somali presidential palace Wednesday evening.
Capt. Mohamed Hussein, the spokesperson for the Somali security forces, said bodyguards escorting Nur Farah (auditor general of Somalia) opened fire on a car carrying Abbas Abdullahi, near a checkpoint close to the palace. It is not immediately clear what prompted the shooting. Security concerns are high in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, as the al-Shabab extremist group continues to target the palace, military facilities and hotels with suicide car bombings and other attacks. The car carrying the minister approached and trailed the car carrying the auditor general, promoting his bodyguards to open fire, Hussein said. The minister’s bodyguards fired back.
Another minister who was in the car with Abbas Abdullahi Sheikh Siraji survived.
Security concerns are high in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, as the al-Shabaab armed group continues to target the palace, military facilities and hotels with suicide car bombings and other attacks. The minister who was killed, a former refugee who spent large parts of his life at a camp in Kenya, had been the youngest member of Somalia’s new cabinet.
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