February 9, 2017 / 5:54 AM / 3 years ago

Gunfire erupts in Somali capital during vote, possibly in celebration -witness

Somali government soldiers guard a road which was blocked to control motor vehicle traffic, during a security lock down in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, February 7, 2017. REUTERS/Feisal Omar

MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Gunfire echoed across the Somali capital on Wednesday evening during the second round of voting by lawmakers for their president, a Reuters witness said.

The reason for the firing was not immediately clear, but it appeared to be celebratory as it erupted as former Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo took a strong lead in the vote, over incumbent Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. A third candidate was trailing further behind.

None of the trio seemed on course to secure the necessary votes to avoid a third round face-off between the top two.

Reporting by Abdi Sheikh; Writing by Edmund Blair

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