by Rehan Qamar
World leaders from all regions including the United States, United Kingdom, Turkey, Canada and France have condemned the weekend truck bombing in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.
The explosion has been named the worst single explosion in the East African country’s history. Occurring at busy Zoobe junction, the blast impacted an area of the city filled with many shops, hotels and offices leaving more than 300 dead.
In a statement released on Sunday, Washington condemned the bombing “in the strongest terms”. The US “will continue to stand with the Somali government, its people, and our international allies to combat terrorism and support their efforts to achieve peace, security, and prosperity,” the statement released by the Department of State said.
Boris Johnson, UK’s foreign secretary, said London “condemns in the strongest terms the cowardly attacks in Mogadishu, which have claimed so many innocent lives”.
The Eiffel Tower has turned off its lights in solidarity with the victims of the attack.
French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted, ”Solidarity with Somalia. Support to the African Union against Islamist terrorist groups. France stands by your side.”
Turkey has assisted several severely injured victims and plans on continuing so. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Ankara was sending planes “with medical supplies”, adding that the wounded would be flown to Turkey and treated there.
My condolences to the government and the people of Somalia. We stand by Somalia in the fight against terror and will tirelessly continue to help it recover from such atrocious attacks,” Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey’s foreign minister said.
In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has also condemned the attacks in a tweet stating, “The attacks in Somalia are horrifying and Canada condemns them strongly. We mourn with the Canadian Somali community today.”
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has urged all Somalis “to unite in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism and work together in building a functional and inclusive federal state”.
“Sickened by attacks in Mogadishu. I send condolences to the victims and urge unity in the face of terrorism and violent extremism,” Guterres said in a tweet.
Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairman of the African Union Commission, asked the Somali government “to show renewed unity at this critical time and overcome divisions, to rebuild cohesion at all levels of the federal institutions.” The African Union has vowed to continue its support to the Somali government and people in their efforts to achieve sustainable peace and security.
We could only hope the international community continues to unite and empower one another over such tragedies.