A MASSIVE truck bomb has killed 231 people and injured 275 others in what is the deadliest attack to ever hit the Horn Of Africa.

The weapon was detonated in Somalia's capital of Mogadishu yesterday and is the deadliest truck bomb in the country's history.

 Rescuers remove an injured person from the scene of the explosion in Mogadishu
 A Somali man puts his hands on his head in disbelief at the scene of the devastation
 The death toll in the Somali capital has reached 231
 A bloodied man is given help by two people following the truck bomb

President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo declared three days of national mourning and called for donations of blood and funds to victims of the attack.

Police said the truck bomb exploded outside a hotel in the K5 intersection that is lined with government offices, restaurants, and kiosks.

The blast flattened several buildings and set dozens of vehicles on fire but two hours later another blast struck the capital’s Medina district.

Today police and emergency workers searched the rubble of destroyed buildings.

 A man being carried away from the blast outside the Safari Hotel
 The wreckage of the Safari hotel following the explosion yesterday

They also recovered dozens of corpses the night before, most of which were charred beyond recognition.

Hundreds of people came to the junction in search of missing family members and police cordoned off the area for security reasons.

Angry protesters also gathered to condemn those behind the attack which has been labelled a "national disaster".

The UN's special envoy to Somalia called the deadly truck bombing in the capital “revolting” and said an unprecedented number of civilians have been killed.

 Vehicles were set on fire as a result of the explosion's ferocity
 Burnt out cars following the deadliest ever truck bomb in Somali history

A statement from Michael Keating read: "I am shocked and appalled by the number of lives that were lost in the bombings and the scale of destruction they caused.”

He added that the UN and African Union are supporting the Somali government’s response with "logistical support, medical supplies and expertise”.

Local journalists said one freelancer was killed in the bombing with the Voice of America claiming one of its reporters, Abdulkaidr Mohamed Abdulle, is among the injured.

The International Committee of the Red Cross said four of its volunteers with the Somali Red Crescent Society are among the dead.

 Rescuers attempt to rescue people from buildings destroyed by the blast

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, although the Islamist militant group al-Shabaab, which is allied to al Qaeda, stages regular attacks in the capital and other parts of the country.

The group is waging an insurgency against the United  Nations-backed government and its African Union allies in a bid to topple the weak administration.

It wants to impose its own government with a strict interpretation of Islam.

The militants controlled Mogadishu between 2007 and 2011 but withdrew as fighting raged.

African Union peacekeepers also drove them out of most other territory they controlled.

Among the terrorists thought to be working with al-Shabaab is British national Samantha Lewthwaite who has been dubbed the 'White Widow'.

She was born Natalie Faye Web and is thought to have masterminded several of the group's attacks in eastern Africa over recent years.

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Source: https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/4689282/somalia-capital-hit-by-largest-ever-truck-bomb-killing-231-and-injuring-more-than-275-people/

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