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UK citizens warned against travel to Somalia

by Judy Maina, judy.maina@alleastafrica.com

NAIROBI
– British government warned its citizens against traveling to Somalia and the northern breakaway region of Somaliland because of a constant threat of terrorist attacks in Mogadishu and plans by the group to launch attacks against westerners in the rest of Somalia including Somaliland.

“Any British nationals in areas of Somalia to which the FCO advise against all travel should leave. Any British nationals in Hargeisa or Berbera who are not on essential travel should leave.” The government said in a foreign travel advice issued on early Monday.

The warning, which is more serious than the travel alert issued, raised an alarm at potential terrorism, including kidnapping, throughout Somalia, including Somaliland.

Al-Shabab, a terrorist group linked to al-Qaeda has stepped up attacks across large parts of Somalia in recent years.
The group has also carried out deadly attacks in Somaliland and Puntland.

In 2008, six suicide bombers carried out simultaneous suicide car bomb attacks in Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland, and Bosaso, the commercial hub of the neighboring Puntland state, killing at least 30 people.

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