MOGADISHU, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- Three people were killed in a roadside blast in Somali capital Mogadishu on Saturday, the police and government officials said.
Sadiq Adan, police spokesman said the soldiers were killed following an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded on a vehicle carrying two former lawmakers and a prominent traditional elder in Kaaraan district of central Mogadishu.
"Those who were killed are three bodyguards of the former lawmakers. Their driver was badly wounded while two former members of parliament were slightly injured," Adan told Xinhua on the phone.
The latest blast is part of a series of similar bombings in Mogadishu that have killed several government officials in the recent past.
Kaaraan District Commissioner, Abshir Mohamed Mohamud told reporters that al-Shabab militants were behind the IED attack that targeted former Parliament members and urged people to be vigilant.
"IED attack left three soldiers dead and injured three senior officials including Muhyadin Hassan Afrah who was a former Parliament member of Somalia. The enemy, al-Shabab militants, hid the bomb on the roadside," Mohamud said.
He added that the two injured former lawmakers were rushed to the hospital but independent sources said the death toll is more than those mentioned.
The attack is the second targeting one of the two ex-lawmakers within a month and comes after surviving a similar attack in Kaaraan district on Dec. 20 last year but his bodyguard was killed.
Al-Shabab militants, who are fighting the internationally-backed government claimed responsibility for the latest attack in the restive Mogadishu.
The al-Qaida linked group was driven out of the capital, Mogadishu, in 2011, but the militants are still hiding in the rural areas of those regions conducting ambushes and planting landmines. Enditem