News ID: 238444
Published: 0500 GMT February 04, 2019

Al-Shabab kills UAE-owned firm boss in Somalia's Puntland , conducts deadly blast in capital

Al-Shabab kills UAE-owned firm boss in Somalia's Puntland , conducts deadly blast in capital

Al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Shabab militants have shot to death the head of Dubai-owned P&O Ports in Somalia’s semi-autonomous Puntland region, according to local government sources.

Yusuf Mohamed, governor of Puntland’s Bari region told Reuters on Monday that two gunmen, disguised as fishermen, had shot Maltese national Paul Anthony Formosa, while he was on his way to Bosaso port, the commercial capital of the Puntland region.

The al-Shabab terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the attack, accusing Formosa of illegal presence in Somalia, Presstv Reported.

“We are behind the operation ... we had warned him but he turned deaf ear. He was illegally in Somalia,” claimed an al-Shabaab spokesman, Abdiasis Abu Musab.

P&O Ports is a company with a decades-long history in shipping and ports. The Dubai-based ports company has sparked friction with Mogadishu over its development of ports in Berbera in breakaway Somaliland, whose independence is not recognized -- as well as in Puntland.

Fatal blast in capital

In another development, an explosive-laden car was detonated at a shopping mall on Tuesday, killing 11 people, including civilians, and injuring 10 others.

The explosion targeted Hamarweyne, a busy area with shops and restaurants.

Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the bombing as well.

The al-Qaeda-linked militant outfit, which has long sought to topple Somalia’s Western-backed government, was forced out of Mogadishu with the help of African Union forces in 2011.

However, the terrorist group still wields control in large parts of the countryside, and every now and then carries out deadly attacks against government, military, and civilian targets in the capital as well as regional towns.

The terrorist group has fought successive Somali governments as well as neighboring governments in Kenya and Uganda.



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