By Jim Kouri
The death toll from the suicide car bomb that targeted the Somali capital of Mogadishu on Tuesday has reached 65, with more than 56 others wounded by the massive blast.
The improvised explosive device (IED) detonated adjacent to a Somali government building in the center of the capital city not far from the Education Ministry in which students were sitting for a foreign scholarship examination.
A U.S. intelligence source told the Law Enforcement Examiner that the bomb targeted a Somali government ministry building and that it was large-scale blast that could be heard miles away from the city.
Most of the dead and injured were said to be students and other civilians within the blast area.
A pro-Al Shabaab website described the attack as a ”martyrdom operation,” claiming that it targeted a ceremony at a government building where cabinet ministers were attending. Al Shabaab was recently driven out of Mogadishu by Somali soldiers and military troops from the African Union.
Somali government officials claim the radical Islamic web site confirmed that the al-Qaeda-linked Al Shabaab group was behind the attack.
This attacks mark the first major assault by the radical Islamist group since they withdrew from Somali capital Mogadishu in August.
The Islamist group Al Shabaab, which is fighting Somali government forces and African Union peacekeeping forces, have often carried out similar attacks on government and AU force targets in Mogadishu.