Marshale: Famous Somali comedian shot dead in Mogadishu

Abdi Jeylani Marshale
Image caption Abdi Jeylani Marshale briefly went into exile after being threatened

One of Somalia's best known comedians has been buried after being shot dead at his home in the capital, Mogadishu by two unidentified men.

Abdi Jeylani Marshale was popular for his TV and radio shows and was reportedly killed just after leaving a local radio station.

It is not clear who was behind the killing but last year he was threatened by militant group al-Shabab.

He used to make people laugh by impersonating Islamist fighters.

Witnesses told the BBC that Marshale was shot several times in the head and chest by two men armed with pistols.

After being threatened by al-Shabab, he went to neighbouring Somaliland for several days before returning home.

"This is a black day for the entire entertainment industry, he was a leader in Somalia comedy and everybody liked his performance," said Yusuf Keynan, a presenter at Kulmiye radio, where Marshale worked.

Meanwhile, two suicide bombers have reportedly blown themselves up outside the gates of the constituent assembly in Mogadishu, killing a government soldier along with themselves.

A police official told reporters that the two men's suicide belts had exploded after officers fired at them. No group has said it carried out the attack.

The incident happened shortly before the assembly endorsed a new constitution for Somalia, paving the way for a new government to be formed later this month.

African Union troops and the UN-backed government have forced al-Shabab out of Mogadishu but the al-Qaeda linked group frequently stages attacks in the city.

It still controls many areas of southern and central Somalia.

The country has not had a functioning national government since 1991.

Around the BBC