Reporters Without Borders said Wednesday that it is deeply shocked by the suicide bombing that killed several people and wounded many others at a ceremony in Somalia’s national theatre in Mogadishu marking the first anniversary of the country’s national television station reopening.
At least seven journalists covering the event were seriously wounded.
“We condemn this despicable attack in the strongest possible terms and our thoughts are with the many victims,” the press freedom organization said.
“As it is often the case when the perpetrators want to strike at the heart of the transitional government, the attack was carried out at a public event covered by the media and attended by many people, including officials.”
Reporters Without Borders is ready to offer material and financial assistance to the injured journalists.
A journalist with Radio Ergo said: “I am in a shocked mood, sitting 50 metres away from the spot. The whole area has been damaged, there are windows blown out.” He said the area was littered with bodies.
According to reports received by Reporters Without Borders, a woman carrying a concealed device blew herself up as she mingled with the crowd.
The injured journalists were named as:
- Mohamed Shariif of the radio station Bar-Kulan
- Ahmed Ali Kahiye of Radio Kulmiye
- Ayaan Abdi (female) of the television station Somalie 24
- Deeqo Mohamed Ahmed (female) of Radio Mogadiscio
- Hamdi Mohammed Hassan Hiis (female) of Somali Channel TV
- Said Shire Warsame of Shabelle TV
- Mulki Hassan Hayle (female) of Royal TV
The method of the attack — a suicide bombing in Mogadishu at an event attended by many figures from the transitional federal government — appeared to point to the al-Shabaab militia.