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Car bomb hits U.N. cars, kills 2 near Mogadishu's airport

By Omar Nor and Ben Brumfield, CNN
updated 7:32 AM EST, Thu February 13, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Four others were wounded in the attack, officials say
  • Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for the attack
  • Mortar rounds fired on Mogadishu Wednesday, authorities say

Mogadishu, Somalia (CNN) -- A car bomb explosion near the airport in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, killed two people and wounded four more Thursday, police Capt. Mohamed Hussein said.

Those killed were civilians, and four security guards were wounded.

The blast occurred when a suicide attacker drove an explosives-laden car into two bulletproof U.N. cars and detonated it, Hussein said.

People gather near the site of a car bomb explosion in Mogadishu on February 10, 2014.
People gather near the site of a car bomb explosion in Mogadishu on February 10, 2014.
Official: Strike targeted militant leader

The area of the attack, Mogadishu's airport, is heavily guarded. It is considered one of the city's safe havens.

No U.N. personnel were killed or injured, a U.N. spokeswoman in Mogadishu said.

Terror network Al-Shabaab, al Qaeda's affiliate in Somalia, claimed responsibility for the attack. Spokesman Sheikh Abdiazia Abu Musab contradicted the U.N. spokeswoman and claimed that the blast killed three foreign U.N. employees.

The group has been designated a terrorist organization by the United States. It hopes to turn Somalia into a fundamentalist Islamic state by force but has launched attacks in other countries, such as Kenya and Uganda, that have killed dozens.

The U.S. military conducted an airstrike in southern Somalia in late January against a suspected militant leader, a U.S. military official told CNN then. It is unclear if that leader was killed.

On Wednesday, eight mortar rounds rained down on Mogadishu, security officials and witnesses said. No group has yet claimed responsibility for that attack.

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