People search for bodies at the scene of a blast in Mogadishu, Somalia, on Thursday. AP
Witnesses say a large explosion has occurred in Somalia’s capital during the morning rush hour early on Thursday, triggering a plume of smoke which rose from the blast site amid gunfire.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility but militant group Al Shabaab frequently carries out bombings in the Horn of Africa country.
A plume of smoke was seen rising above Mogadishu on Thursday.
Fifteen wounded people have been rushed to a hospital, the Amin ambulance service told the media. The blast occurred close to a school.
Rescue workers carry away the body who was killed in a blast in Mogadishu, Somalia, on Thursday. AP
The blast which occurred near the K4 junction in the heart of Mogadishu was so huge it collapsed the walls of nearby schools and also left cars mangled.
"We were shaken by the blast pressure, then deafened by the gunfire that followed," Mohamed Hussein, a nurse at the nearby Osman Hospital told Reuters.
He added he had been pulled from the rubble of a collapsed ceiling.
"Our hospital walls collapsed. Opposite us is a school that also collapsed. I do not know how many died," he said.
The extremist group Al-Shabab in a statement carried by its Andalus radio said it targeted Western officials being escorted by the African Union peacekeeping convoy.
The Al Qaeda-linked group frequently targets the capital with attacks.
Security officials and witnesses reported bodies strewn on the ground as plumes of smoke rose high into the air after the bomb detonated on Mogadishu's Maka Al-Mukarama road, one of the seaside capital's main thoroughfares, an area busy with businesses and travellers.
The blast occurred on Thursday at the Chenjiagang Industrial Park in the city of Yancheng, in Jiangsu province, and the fire was finally brought under control at 3.00am on Friday (1900 GMT), state television said.
A big explosion was heard in the heart of Somalia's capital Mogadishu on Saturday, with clouds of smoke seen above the scene of blast, a Reuters witness reported.
The financial crunch worsened after Washington froze about $10 billion of the country's reserves and deteriorated further after the World Bank and International Monetary Fund halted Afghanistan's access to funding.
They blamed the attack on the CODECO militia, which has killed hundreds of civilians in Congo's Ituri province and forced thousands to flee their homes in the last few years.
The four children, who were all under the age of 12, were declared dead at the scene in the small town of Lancaster, near Los Angeles. The children's grandmother, who was in her 50s, also died in the shooting on Sunday evening.