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Report: Somalia

Suicide blast kills two soldiers in southern Somalia

REUTERS/Stuart Price

A suicide bomber blew himself up in a bar in front of the UN building in southern Somali town of Baidoa on Tuesday. At least two soldiers were killed, according to the province's governor, Abdifatah Mohamed Ibrahim. One died on the spot while the other one died in hospital later.

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The suicide bomber struck when the soldiers approached him to check his ID.

In February local troops supported by the Ethiopian forces managed to wrest control of the city from Al-Shebab.

The Al-Qaeda-backed insurgents, who have launched a series of attacks in recent months and vowed to topple the Western-backed government, immediately claimed responsibility for Tuesday's bombing.

Their spokesperson Abdulaziz Abu Musab claims they killed five Somali government soldiers and three Ethiopian troops.

Earlier this month 100 Ugandan troops from the African Union's Amisom force in Somalia went to Baidoa.

This is the first Amisom deployment outside the capital Mogadishu.

A total of 2,500 are due to go to Baidoa, so Ethiopian soldiers there can withdraw from Somalia.

Last week a bomb blast in Baidoa's market killed at least 11 people and wounded several others, an attack also claimed by Al-Shebab.

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