Militants carried out two attacks in Bosaso (Bari region, Puntland semiautonomous state) on Wednesday, October 3. The first attack targeted a mosque in the city center, in which one journalist was killed and a local resident injured. Simultaneously, a Somali politician was killed in an eastern district of the city. Local affiliates of the Islamic state (IS) terrorist group have claimed responsibility for the latter attack.
Furthermore, IS claimed responsibility for the killing of three Christian Ethiopians in Bosaso, also located in the Bari region, on October 1, the first attack by the group targeting foreigners in the region.
Puntland is home to a splinter group of Al-Shabaab that has sworn allegiance to IS. According to security sources, a small contingent of militants is based in the Golis Mountains east of Bosaso.
Al-Shabaab continues to control large zones in the south and center of the country and attacks have been on the rise in the northern parts of Somalia, including Puntland, since late 2016. The group often targets government officials and military infrastructure in a bid to topple the Western- and UN-backed government and impose its own strict interpretation of Islam in Somalia.
Individuals in Somalia, particularly in Mogadishu, are advised to remain vigilant and obey all instructions issued by the local authorities.
The security environment in Somalia remains complex. Although travel is possible in some areas with proper security protocols in place, other areas should be considered strictly off-limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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