“The enemy can now access everywhere,” said MP Mohamed Nor. In Somalia as in Nigeria, the Islamic jihadists can apparently strike at will, with the government powerless to stop them. Another similarity between these two countries is that al-Shabab, like Boko Haram, is an avowedly Islamic group that proudly and unapologetically explains its motives and goals by referring to Islamic texts and teachings, only to see the non-Muslim world deny it all and insist that they must be motivated by something else.
“Somalia parliament attacked by al-Shabab in Mogadishu,” BBC, May 24, 2014 (thanks to King Dave):
Islamist militants from the al-Shabab movement have attacked the Somali parliament in Mogadishu, leaving at least 10 people dead.
Explosions and gunfire were heard and witnesses reported seeing bodies.
Somali police were joined by African Union troops as they engaged the attackers.
Al-Shabab, which is linked to al-Qaeda, once controlled large areas of Somalia but was pushed out of major cities in 2011 and 2012.
However, it is still able to mount complex attacks. It has frequently targeted the UN-backed parliament.
A car bomb exploded outside the gates of parliament shortly before midday local time (09:00 GMT), followed by more blasts and bursts of gunfire.
The attackers then stormed the front of the parliament building as security forces fired back.
“Fighting is going on inside the parliament building and we are fighting rebels inside the building but we evacuated members of parliament,” Col Mahamed Dahir said….
“The enemy can now access everywhere,” MP Mohamed Nor told Associated Press, criticising the army’s failure to protect parliament.
An al-Shabab spokesman told the AFP news agency: “The so-called Somali parliament is a military zone. Our fighters are there to carry out a holy operation.”…
Al-Shabab, whose name means “The Youth” in Arabic, advocates the strict Saudi-inspired Wahhabi version of Islam.