published Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Somali security minister killed in explosion

MOGADISHU, Somalia — Somalia’s information minister says the country’s national security minister has been killed in an explosion in a western town.

Farhan Ali Mohamud declined to give any other details on the death of National Security Minister Omar Hashi Aden.

Mohamed Nur, who witnessed the bombing in Belet Weyne, says a small car drove toward the gate of the Medina Hotel, drove into vehicles leaving the hotel and exploded.

Medical officials say at least 20 people have died in the apparent suicide bombing.

Belet Weyne is the capital of the central Somali region of Hiran. It is close to the border with Ethiopia.

Somalia has not had an effective government for 18 years after warlords overthrew a longtime dictator and plunged the country into anarchy and chaos.

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