Paul Anthony Formosa, the Maltese head of P&O Ports’ operations in the Puntland region of Somalia, has been shot and killed by gunmen.
Speaking to Reuters, Yusuf Mohamed, the governor of the Bari region, said that two men disguised as fishermen had shot Mr Formosa at a fish market as he was traveling to the port in Bosaso.
Mr Formosa, who had been head of the business unit since August 2017, was rushed to a hospital, where he died of his wounds. One of the attackers was shot and killed by security forces at the scene and the other was detained, Mr Mohamed said.
The Islamist militant group known as the Shabab claimed responsibility for the attack. A spokesman for the group said that Mr Formosa has been warned but had turned a ‘deaf ear’, and claimed that he was ‘illegally in Somalia.’
The Shabab is trying to remove the Western-backed central government in Somalia and establish its own rule based on its strict interpretation of Shariah law.
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion issued a press release after the news broke on international media, stating that it was following the case closely and would issue "additional information should there be significant developments."