The man behind one of the most deadliest bombings in recent history was a soldier whose home town was raided by US special forces two months ago, officials have said.
At least 300 people were killed after a truck bomb was detonated in the centre of Mogadishu, with at least another 200 in a critical condition.
Not only was it the deadliest attack in Somalian history, but it was one of the most devastating terror attacks anywhere in the world for a number of years.
On Tuesday, people were still bring the charred remains of victims out of the rubble that is now spread over hundreds of square metres.
Somalian investigators have now told The Guardian that they believe the attack was at least partly motivated by revenge, after a botched US-led operation against the attacker’s specific community in Bariire in August.
Bariire, a town around 50km west of the capital Mogadishu, is an al-Shabaab stronghold.
Three children aged between six and 10 died in the raid, prompting local tribal elders to call for revenge against the Somali government and its allies.
It’s claimed the driver joined the army in 2010, but ended up defecting from the military to join terror group al-Shabaab in 2015.
What do we know about the Mogadishu bombing?
The horrific attack reportedly involved two vehicles – a Toyota Noah minivan and a much larger lorry carrying around 350kg of military grade and homemade explosives.
The van and lorry were targeting a heavily guarded compound in Mogadishu which houses the UN, most embassies, and the headquarters of Amisom, the African Union’s peacekeeping force.
The minivan was meant to blow open the Medina Gate entrance, but it was stopped beforehand and the driver was detained. The bomb then detonated without any casualties.
The larger lorry bomb was then set off at a busy crossroads around a kilometre from the compound, igniting a fuel truck nearby and sparking a huge fireball.
Details of the victims are also slowly trickling out.
Maryam Abdullahi was a medical student who was due to graduate on Sunday, finally qualifying as a fully-fledged doctor.
Her father had flown to Mogadishu to go to her graduation. However, he ended up attending her funeral.
Many victims have gone unidentified, however. As many as 165 unidentified bodies have now been buried.
Some of the bodies were so badly burned that they were completely beyond recognition.
Somalia doesn’t have a public health record database, so it doesn’t have the means to identify victims by DNA.
Meanwhile people around the world are wondering where the solidarity hashtags and slogans are in the wake of the atrocity.
Khaled Beydoun, an activist and law professor in Detroit, wrote on Facebook on Sunday: ‘I hate comparing human tragedies, but the mainstream media makes you do it.
‘Listen, the number of people killed in Somalia yesterday was more than 10x more (230+) than the number killed in the terror attack in Manchester in May (22). 230 to 22.
‘Yet, there are no slogans claiming “We Are Mogadishu” and no catchy images floating around social media demonstrating solidarity.
‘Most shamefully, there is little mainstream media attention documenting the ungodly death and devastation in Somalia’s capital, and certainly no television specials or emergency fundraisers providing aid. None and none and none.
‘We get it – white and Western, European and American victims “merit” the media attention and the public alarm it spurs, and Black and foreign, African and Muslims do not.’
He added that ‘the implicit message rendered by this lack of coverage is that this brand of terror is “indigenous and common” to places like Somalia, African and Muslim-majority countries at large’.Let's