Airstrikes pound Somalia after summit

MOGADISHU, Somalia, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Witnesses said Friday they're not sure who fired an airstrike in the Islamist south of Somalia that left several foreign fighters dead.

London wrapped up a conference Thursday for Somalia with pledges of support for the government in Mogadishu. There hasn't been a functioning central government in Somalia since the 1990s, though the interim administration has made gains against al-Qaida's affiliate al-Shabaab, which seeks and Islamic state in the country.


Witnesses told the BBC an airstrike in Somalia killed four, including three foreigners, in an area controlled by al-Shabaab.

The BBC reported the strike came from five helicopters. Its correspondents in Mogadishu, about 35 miles north of the attack, said the blast was bigger than anything likely carried out by African forces fighting in the region.

The U.S. military has a base in nearby Djibouti. U.S. forces have conducted military strikes in Somalia.

World leaders expressed optimism that Somalia was turning the corner after years of civil war. Somali President Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed, however, said his government was "scared of tomorrow."

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