MOGADISHU – As the number of Mogadishu bombing casualties increases, shocking details are revealing about the victims who were killed in the deadliest assault the country has ever witnessed.
Somalia’s three-day national mourning period for the victims is coming to an end, with around 300 more people also injured in the blast. Dozens are missing, hospitals are running out of blood and anger is growing.
Last Saturday, a truck bomb was exploded outside the Safari hotel in the K5 intersection that is lined with government offices, restaurants and kiosks.
The attack flattened several buildings and set dozens of vehicles on fire. Two hours later, another blast struck the capital’s Medina district.
On Tuesday remains of victims were still being brought out of rubble spread over hundreds of square meters.
The death toll from the attack is expected to rise. Rescue workers say the true total of those killed by a truck bomb containing hundreds of kilograms of military grade and homemade explosives will probably never be known.
The intense heat generated by the blast, which also ignited a petrol tanker, means that almost no trace of some victims remains. Others were rapidly buried by their relatives, in line with Islamic custom.
This video gives brief information about those killed in the bombing, their lives, and dreams that were battered in the heinous attack.
As Somalia buried its dead, social media users have asked: Where is the collective outrage?
The attack in Somalia came little more than one week after a deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas, but many noted a quieter response to events in Mogadishu.
“The world is unfair; social media can attest to that. 276 died in Somalia and we aren’t doing the same thing we did when it was Las Vegas,” tweeted Eke van Victor.
“We mourn with Somalia. 276 dead. 300 hurt. We confess that our tears are often limited to the West. Forgive us. We long for peace with you,” said Eugene Cho.
“You should be as devastated about the sheer loss of life in Somalia, as you were about the senseless killings in Vegas,” wrote Stacey Dooley, a British television presenter.
Some were also concerned by the low level of media coverage compared with other horrendous attacks.
Commentator and law professor Khaled Beydoun noted that a bomb attack in Manchester, a northern British city, was covered more widely.
“The # of people killed in Somalia yesterday was 10x more than the # killed in Manchester in May (230 to 22). But it got 100x less coverage,” he tweeted.
Clint Smith, a Ph.D. candidate at Harvard, tweeted: “Imagine if 250+ ppl in the US or UK or France were killed in a truck bomb. That’s what just happened in Somalia. They deserve to be mourned.”
“More than 200 killed in a blast in Somalia, no twitter trends/headlines, proof that world is governed only by power politics, not by humanity,” said Pakistani actor Hamza Ali Abbasi.