Italy: Libyan bomber ‘prayed with us’ says Muslim leader

After surviving the blast the bomber shouted “Help me, Help me” says witness

Milan, 12 October (AKI) – The Libyan who detonated a bomb at the ‘Santa Barbara’ military barracks on Monday, Mohammed Game, prayed at Milan’s Viale Jenner Mosque, said the head of the Islamic Institute in Milan. “He is a Libyan who hung out everywhere and who even prayed with us, just like thousands of others do, but we did not know him very well,” said the institute’s president Abdel Hamid Shaari in an interview with Adnkronos.

“He prayed and then he left. He wouldn’t stay around,” said Shaari. He added that Game was last seen at the mosque over 20 days ago, towards the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

On Monday, an Italian soldier was injured after 35-year-old Game exploded a bomb hidden inside a toolbox at the entrance of the ‘Santa Barbara’ barracks (photo). The man is said to have entered the courtyard of the barracks on foot, where he was confronted by a military guard.

He then detonated the rudimentary explosives, which were reportedly made of solid nitrate.

The toolbox where the man hid the explosive device contained two more kilogrammes of explosives, and according to reports, it only partially detonated.

Authorities have said if the entire load had detonated, there would definitely have been deaths.

Early reports said the man shouted: “The army must leave Afghanistan!” which according to authorities is not true.

“After the blast, the man did say something, but according to witnesses his words were unintelligible as they were all in Arabic,” said public prosecutor Armando Spataro.

“He had a dark coloured jacket and his face was bloody. He shouted: Help me, Help me!” said a witness, Giovanni L, a sergeant major.

According to the witness, when Game was being taken to the hospital he “pointed a finger towards the sky, like a victory sign.”

Game, had been living in Italy for many years and lived with an Italian woman with whom they have three children. A train ticket from the southern city of Naples to Milan was found to be in his possession, although it is still unclear if and when he took the train and for which reason.

Italian authorities said Game lived close to the barracks and that he slept at his apartment in Milan the night before the attack.

The injured Italian soldier was hit by shards of glass and received medical treatment at the scene of the attack which took place at 7.45 am local time.

Following the attack, Game was taken to the Fatebenefratelli hospital in Milan where he was reported to be in critical condition.

The Libyan man suffered severe injuries to his face and eyesight and his hand has been amputated, according to medical sources at Fatebenefratelli hospital.

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