MOGADISHU (SD) – Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble has directed armed forces to intensify operations against al-Shabaab militants ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections.
In recent months, Somali military and regional forces had killed more than hundred militants and recaptured towns in central Somalia.
Several other militants have surrendered to government following military pressure in the front-line.
Late last week, Abdirazak Abdullahi Mohamed, who was a senior al-Shabab operative surrendered to government forces in Garbaharey, a town located in Southern Somalia.
Friday evening, four soccer players were killed and several others wounded after an IED fitted to a bus they were travelling in, went off in port city of Kismayo of Jubbaland state.
The players of the Jubbaland Chamber of Commerce and Industry club were due for a game at the Kismayo city stadium when the blast hit their car.
Jubbaland state leader, Ahmed Mohamed Madobe was expected to watch a game.
On Saturday, PM Roble blamed al-Shabaab of masterminding the attack against the players, calling for an immediate end to attacks by the group.
Roble extended condolences to the families of the victims.
“I send my condolences to the families of the victims, the administration and the people of Jubbaland. Terrorist acts must not prevent us from achieving our goal of peace and state-building,” Roble said.
Kismayo, the capital of southerly state of Jubaland, is located about 500 kilometers (310 miles) southwest of the Somali capital.