Somalia rocked by several deadly attacks

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At least 10 people have been killed after a suicide bomber struck makeshift kiosks in the Somali capital, hitting hours after al Shabaab Islamist militants attacked two army bases outside the city, the government says.

"A suicide bomber blew up himself under trees where poor mothers sold tea, milk and (narcotic leaf) khat," Information Ministry spokesman Ismail Mukhtar Omar said, adding that more people were wounded in the attack.

There was no immediate comment from the al Shabaab, which had earlier claimed responsibility for the deadly attacks on the Bariire and Awdhigle army bases.

Somalia's army said earlier that there had been heavy casualties on both sides in those attacks, but it was now in control.

The bases, located about 100km southwest of Mogadishu, were struck by two explosions, witnesses said. A third explosion targeted a convoy of troops rushing to the bases from the capital after the attack, they added.

Militants from al Shabaab, which is linked to al-Qaeda, have waged years of attacks and levied tolls on trade in a campaign to introduce strict religious law.

Saturday's attacks come amid heightened fears that the group could seek to exploit vulnerabilities created by failure to hold a parliamentary and presidential election, which was due in February.

Hussein Nur, a military officer, said the army lost "several" soldiers in the attack on the bases, without giving a precise number.

The army sent in reinforcements from other stations, who killed an unidentified number of attackers in the ensuing fight, he said.

The army had taken control of both bases and the surrounding area and were pursuing the militants in the surrounding jungle, he said.

Al Shabaab said it had launched a vehicle-borne suicide bomb attack on the Bariire base while simultaneously attacking the nearby Awdhigle base with a car bomb and fighters.