Al Shabab militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack. (File photo)
Al Shabab militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack. (File photo)

A car bomb exploded outside a military base in the Somali capital on Sunday killing at least 15 people, a military official said.

The death toll could rise as a minibus carrying passengers was destroyed in the blast.

"At least 15 people, mostly civilians, died in the blast," Major Hussein Nur, a military official, said.

"We do not know the exact figure of casualties. All the people on board the ruined minibus perished. Soldiers and other private security guards also died," he said.

TRT World spoke with Mogadishu-based journalist Hussein Mohammed for the latest.

Al Shabab claims responsibility

Al Shabab, which is carrying out increasingly deadly bombings despite losing most of its territory to African Union peacekeepers supporting the Somali government, claimed responsibility for the attack.

A witness at the scene of the explosion saw a wrecked mini-bus, human flesh, and damage to the tarmac road.

"The suicide car bomb was targeting senior military officials but by good luck their car was not hit. Their car turned a minute before the blast," a military official said.

Somalia's President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed replaced his security chiefs last week and called on Al Shabab fighters to surrender within 60 days in return for education and jobs.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies