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|July 12, 2010|
Three synchronized explosions tore through two restaurants and a rugby club in Kampala, Uganda's Capitol killing at least 64 people who were watching Sundays soccer match. with about 10 minutes remaining in Sunday night's match. According to the BBC, at both scenes chairs lay overturned, with blood and pieces of flesh on the floor
Many - if not most - of those killed and injured in the restaurants and were foreign nationals. One was an American aid worker from California. The crowd at the rugby club was a mix of Ugandans and foreigners.
There were reports that a severed head was found at one of the scenes, leading investigators to suggest that the attacks could have been the work of suicide bombers. Somalia's militant group al-Shabab could be behind Sunday evening's attacks. In particular, the attack on the Ethiopian-owned restaurant raised suspicions of al-Shabab involvement: Addis Ababa backs Somalia's government against the rebels.
Somali militants have been involved in terror attacks across East Africa in the past, but - if proven - this would be the first time the current group has struck outside Somalia.
In Mogadishu, a militant commander Sheik Yusuf Sheik Issa reported he was "happy" with the attacks in Uganda. While he would not confirm or deny that al-Shabab was responsible he told the Associated Press "Uganda is one of our enemies. Whatever makes them cry, makes us happy. May Allah's anger be upon those who are against us."
My UNICEF trip to Uganda has long been scheduled for tomorrow. We have not canceled it. From Kampala I will be flying to northern Uganda to visit villagers who have been attacked by the Lords Resistance Army. I will try to blog from there