MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Somalia's al Shabaab Islamists detonated a car bomb outside a regional government headquarters on Thursday in the central city of Baidoa and fought their way inside the compound, police and the militants said.
"First, a car bomb exploded at the southwest palace gate and then armed fighters went in," Captain Ali Ahmed, a police officer, told Reuters from Baidoa. Islamist militants confirmed they were behind the attack.
Ahmed said fighting was continuing inside although he said the regional president Sharif Hassan had escaped.
(Reporting by Abdi Sheikh and Feisal Omar; Writing Edith Honan; Editing by Edmund Blair)