Al-Shabab fighters in Somalia have struck again - managing to evade security measures to stage an attack in downtown Mogadishu.

Their target, yet again, a hotel popular with government leaders and members of parliament.

Al-Shabab have waged a relentless war against the government since being forced from the capital.

The fighters have also attacked neighbouring countries who have sent peacekeeping troops to Somalia.

Somalis have not seen a stable government since 1991.

So, how big a threat is al-Shabab in Africa? And could a strong Somali government defeat them?

Presenter: Martine Dennis


Abdirisak Omar - Minister of National Security for the Somali government

Yusuf Omar Al Azhari - Former political adviser to the President of the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia

Afyare Elmi - Professor of international affairs at Qatar University and author of 'Understanding Somalia Conflagration: Identity, Islam, Peacebuilding'

Matt Bryden - Executive Chairman of think-tank and consultancy firm Sahan

Source: Al Jazeera