Street FIGHT:Conflict
Airport Official Assassinated in Mogadishu
Al-Shabaab Main Suspects Amid No Claim of Responsibility
By SOMALIA REPORT 06/08/2011
An official responsible for the VIP section at Mogadishu’s international airport has been shot dead in the Somali capital, with the motive for the killing unclear.

Although Police Spokesman Colonel Abdullahi Hassan Barise declined to reveal the information on the victim, Somalia Report has identified him as Omar Abdulle Mohamed, known as Omar Qaldaan, who was the head of protocol for the president at the airport, according to his colleagues.

He was confronted by gunmen dressed as Transitional Federal Government soldiers as he left mosque in Dharkenley early on Wednesday, witnesses said. He tried to run from his assailants, but was shot in the head and died on the spot.

His co-workers, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, also downplayed the rumour that al-Shabaab was behind the killing and added that the victim regularly received death threats after he was appointed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs earlier this year.

While nobody has claimed responsibility, militant Islamist group al-Shabaab is the chief suspect according to most officials, despite what his co-workers said. The group is under pressure, losing ground in both Mogadishu and border regions, and is believe to turning more to a campaign of guerrilla tactics and assassinations to continue its efforts to oust the government.