Somalia car bombings kill at least 300 people

(CNN) — At least 300 people have been confirmed dead after a double car bombing rocked Mogadishu on Saturday, making it the deadliest attack in Somalia’s modern history.

The revised death toll follows efforts by rescue works to recover bodies from the rubble and the deaths of several people who succumbed to their wounds on Monday, according to Major Ahmed Ibrahim of the police force.

More than 30 people injured severely by the blast were airlifted to Turkey on Monday by military air ambulance after the Turkish health minister arrived in the Somali capital.

Mogadishu, a large city on the east African nation’s coast, has endured high levels of violence for years. Al-Shabaab, an al Qaeda-linked terror group, has carried out several deadly car bomb attacks in the city.

The initial vehicle bomb destroyed dozens of stalls and the popular Safari Hotel in the heart of Mogadishu.

Qatar’s embassy was also damaged, according to a statement from its Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The embassy’s charge d’affaires suffered minor injuries, the statement said.

Minutes after the first blast, a second vehicle bomb went off nearby. No casualties were reported from that second blast, according to police.

Al-Shabaab, which is now based mainly in rural areas in the south of the country having lost control of Mogadishu in 2011, has been waging a war with the Somali government for more than ten years, prompting the African Union to send in peace keeping troops.

The terror group has also taken the war abroad, especially to Kenya. In September 2013, Al-Shabaab gunmen attacked the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi, killing at least 67 people.