MOGADISHU, Feb.2 (Xinhua) -- Two people were killed and two others were injured in a blast in a government controlled town of Bardhere in Somalia's southern region of Gedo on Saturday, according to military officials.
A military officer who asked anonymity told Xinhua that a car filled with explosives detonated near Ethiopian military base in Bardhere town in Somalia's southern region of Gedo, resulting in the death of two people nearby and injuring two others.
"The car exploded when the soldiers at the base stopped it and we can confirm that two people were killed in the blast," the military officer said.
He added that the soldiers had managed to foil the militants' attempt to reach their target. Residents said they heard a rocky blast in the area which is near the border with Kenya.
"We heard a huge blast and learnt that a military base was hit by a car bomb but we don't know additional information," Fahmo Haji, a resident, told Xinhua.
The attack came after Somali national forces are conducting major operations against al-Shabab in central and southern Somalia.
Al-Qaida affiliated group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the blast, saying its fighters carried out a suicide car bomb attack in the town, killing at least 16 Ethiopian soldiers.
The terrorist group said in a statement posted on its affiliated websites that the bomber detonated his explosives-laden vehicle at a military base belonging to Ethiopian troops.
Independent sources said some of the Ethiopian soldiers including two civilians died in the blast.
The attack barely a month after the terrorist group said that their fighters killed 57 Ethiopian troops in an ambush near Burhakaba town in southwest Somalia on Jan. 18.
The terrorist group continues to hold parts of the country's south and central regions after being chased out of Mogadishu several years ago.
Somali and African Union peacekeeping forces have also intensified military operations against the insurgents, flushing them in their Lower and Middle Shabelle region bases as part of efforts to stabilize the Horn of Africa nation.