Sunday, July 12, 2020

Two Londoners gunned down in Somalia terror attack

A pair of London men gunned down in Somalia were trying to “rebuild” the country of their birth and wipe out corruption, friends and family said today.

Mohamoud Mohamed Gure, 61, and Abdullahi Jama, 59, left their families in the UK to work as MPs in Somalia’s federal parliament four years ago.

They were among at least 10 killed at the Ambassador Hotel in the capital Mogadishu on Wednesday when a car bomb was detonated outside and armed men burst in, firing at guests and staff. Militant group al-Shabaab admitted responsibility.

Dozens of mourners gathered at Mr Gure’s home in Holloway, north London, last night to express their sympathies to his wife, five sons and three daughters.

His nephew Abdul Derow, 38, told the Standard: “He and Abdullahi have been trying to rebuild the country. The terrorists do not like anyone involved in politics. He was trying to help Somalia get stability, peace and order, but now that opportunity cannot happen.

“Mohamoud knew it was risky but he decided to help and work hard. It was his life’s work to bring peace to Somalia and if anyone could do that, it was him.

“He was very caring and he also wanted to unite Somali communities in London. His death will affect London as much as it affects Somalia.”

He said that Mr Jama, who lived in Willesden and graduated with a degree in international politics and human rights from City University in 2009, and Mr Gure were committed to restoring peace in their native country.

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Abdullahi Jama was killed as members of al-Shabaab stormed his bedroom

Mr Gure’s brother-in-law Abdulkadir Nagi, 50, said he had spoken of his fears for his life during one of his regular visits home last month. He said: “Everyone was scared for him but he said, ‘We can’t sit back and let the country collapse, someone has to do this job.’

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A Somali woman walks in front of Hotel Ambassador on Maka Al Mukaram Road in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu (Feisal Omar /Reuters)

“It was his dream to see a united Somalia, but it cost him his life.

“His wife was talking to him an hour before the attack, then later she got the worst phone call you could ever get.” The attack came days before the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and as the nation prepares for an election later this year.

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