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Somalia: Major Airlines suspend flights to Mogadishu after US terror warning

The dire U.S. cautions came amid a tense situation in Mogadishu on Monday night, when three mortars struck near the presidential palace, though no casualties were reported. Despite the palpable sense of panic in the capital, the Federal Government of Somalia has not issued any public statement regarding the high-level U.S. terror alert.

The airline cancellations and stepped-up security concerns coincided with the scheduled handover on Tuesday of Mahad Salad, who was recently dismissed as director of Somalia’s National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA).

The al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Shabaab has carried out scores of deadly attacks in its insurgency aimed at overthrowing Somalia’s government and imposing its strict interpretation of Islamic law. The militant group continues to control large swaths of rural territory in southern and central Somalia.