Attempt to kill Somalian President
- From: WWW.AfricanCrisis.Org
Nairobi - Tuesday's deadly blast in a Mogadishu stadium was the result of
an apparent failed attempt to assassinate transitional Somali prime
minister Ali Mohamed Gedi, diplomatic sources said on Wednesday.
The sources said the explosion that killed at least 15 people was not an
accident and occurred when Gedi's security guards stopped an as yet
unidentified militiaman from throwing a hand grenade when the prime
minister was delivering a speech.
Gedi and other officials have said the blast was unintentional and caused
by the accidental detonation of an explosive by a local militia
commander's bodyguard, but sources said on condition of anonymity that
this version of events was being used to allay public fears and prevent
One source who was in Somalia at the time of the blast said diplomats had
been told by one of Gedi's close advisors that the would-be attacker, who
died in the explosion, had been stopped from throwing the grenade.
"We were not in the stadium at the exact moment of the explosion ... but
a little afterwards, when we were about to leave Mogadishu, one of
(Gedi's) advisors told us that it had been an attempted attack," the
"A man had taken out a grenade but was immediately restrained by nearby
militiamen," the source said. "He died in the explosion."
In addition to the dead, about 38 people were injured in the blast that
occurred on the fourth day of Gedi's maiden tour of the capital aimed at
building support for his government and ending a bitter dispute over when
and where in Somalia it should relocate from exile in Kenya.