A few days ago, a prominent Somali journalist named Abdiaziz Mohamud Guled was killed by an al Shabaab suicide bomber as he was leaving a restauraunt in Mogadishu, Somalia. The attack also wounded several other people in the area. Guled was the director of Radio Mogadishu, and was best known for being an outspoken critic of al Shabaab. Among other things, Guled conducted a series of high-profile interviews with al Shabaab suspects who had been detained by Somali security forces. Al Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Despite AMISOM and the Somali government’s success in pushing back al Shabaab’s territorial gains in recent years, this attack proves that al Shabaab still poses a very real threat to Somalia and its security. Attacks like this are not uncommon in Somalia; earlier this semester, I wrote a blog post on a car bomb that was set off by al Shabaab outside of the presidential palace, which killed eight people including Hibaq Abukar, an advisor to the prime minister. The frequency of al Shabaab’s attacks on high-profile figures in Mogadishu indicates that al Shabaab still poses a significant security threat to Somalia. This attack also has implications for Somali journalism, as this attack may dissuade journalists from being critical of al Shabaab in the future.

Anna Bedal