Iran has condemned a deadly terrorist attack in the Somali capital of Mogadishu, urging an international consensus on a “firm and pragmatic” battle against extremism.
“Extremism will have no other outcome than the death of innocent humans and strengthening of the roots of hatred and violence,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Marzieh Afkham, said on Tuesday.
She extended the Islamic Republic’s condolences to the Somali government, nation and the bereaved families of the victims.
At least 15 people, including a Kenyan diplomat , a Chinese embassy guard and two journalists, were killed in a massive truck bomb that went off in front of a hotel in Mogadishu on Sunday.
The five-story luxury hotel, which houses the diplomatic missions of China, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, is very popular among government officials and foreign visitors. The United Nations and African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) are also based in the hotel.
The al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab militants, who have attacked the hotel in the past, claimed responsibility for the blast in a statement.
The UN Security Council also condemned the attack “in the strongest terms.”
Somalia has been the scene of deadly clashes between government forces and al-Shabab militants since 2006.
The militants have been pushed out of Mogadishu and other major cities across the African country by government troops as well as AMISOM (African Union Mission to Somalia) forces, largely made up of soldiers from Uganda, Ethiopia, Burundi, Djibouti, Kenya and Sierra Leone.
However, the al-Shabab militants, who have been attempting to oust the central government in Somalia, have continued to launch attacks on Mogadishu despite being driven out from their bases in the seaside city in 2011.