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RIYADH, Jan 2, (Agencies): Somalia’s Islamist militant group al Shebab has released a recruitment film in the form of a documentary about racial injustice in the United States featuring Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, SITE Monitoring reported on Saturday.
Trump, the billionaire developer, former reality TV star and Republican front runner, was shown in the 51-minute film making his December call for the United States to bar all Muslims from the country as his supporters cheered. It was shown between two clips of militant leader Anwar al-Awlaki, killed in a drone strike in Yemen in 2011, saying Muslims in the United States would face a choice between leaving for Islamic countries or staying at home to fight the West.
The film was distributed on Twitter on Friday by the al-Kataib Media Foundation, an Islamist militant organisation, SITE reported.
Trump’s call to ban Muslims from entering the United States has been widely condemned by American politicians. It has also provoked an international uproar and led to criticism that his views could be used as propaganda by Islamist militants. Al Shebab, which seeks to overthrow Somalia’s Westernbacked government and impose a strict version of sharia, or Islamic law, has links to the international militant group al-Qaeda and has carried out attacks in Kenya and Ethiopia.
A suicide bomber blew himself up in a restaurant in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Saturday, killing three people, police and witnesses said. The attack targeted the Village Restaurant, an eatery in the south of the city popular with journalists and government officials which was already hit by a deadly suicide bombing in 2012. “There were several journalists and other people in the restaurant when the bomber blew himself up. Thank God he is the only one who died in the explosion. Three other civilians were wounded,” said Abdulahi Ibrahim, a senior police official. Idris Abdi, a witness, said the assailant “targeted journalists who were having tea” and who “ran away after becoming suspicious about this man who had wires hanging from his chest.” “There was a heavy blast and I saw injured people,” he said. In September 2012, around 15 people were killed when two suicide bombers blew themselves up in the same restaurant.
No group had yet claimed responsibility for Saturday’s attack but Al-Qaeda affiliated Shebab extremists have carried out a raft of similar attacks in the past. The Shebab are fighting to overthrow the internationallybacked government in Mogadishu, which is protected by 22,000 African Union troops. The insurgents have lost ground since being routed from Mogadishu in 2011 but continue to stage regular shooting and suicide attacks. On Friday evening, police in Mogadishu displayed the bodies of three alleged Shebab fighters who they said were killed during an attack on a police station in Huriwa district in the north of the city. “The police repelled the attackers. Three of the fighters were killed and their weapons confiscated, including an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade),” Mogadishu police commissioner General Ali Hersi told reporters.