AL-SHABAB TOOK HOSTAGES IN MOGADISHU HOTEL
>A suicide bomber, on Friday 03/27/2015 afternoon, has detonated an explosives-laden car at the gate of a Mogadishu Maka Al-Mukaram hotel, and at least four gunmen quickly moved in and have taken hostages inside the building following a furious shootout with police.
At least nine people were killed in the initial blast, while an unknown number of government officials remain trapped inside the building amid sporadic exchanges of gunfire, officials have said.
While the hotel, located in Somalia’s capital, is popular with government officials, it remains unclear who is being targeted in the attack. Yusuf Mohamed Ismail Bari, Somalia’s permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, was among those killed in the attack However, Islamic extremist group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility.
Police captain Mohamed Hussein said he had counted at least nine bodies at the scene, and the death toll is likely to rise.
Al Qaeda-linked al- Shabab has issued a statement taking responsibility for the attack. ‘We are behind the Hotel Maka Al Mukaram attack, and fighting is still going on inside,’ al-Shabab’s military spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab said.
Al-Shabab militants have continued to launch attacks in Mogadishu despite being ousted from their bases in the seaside city in 2011.
Al Shabaab was pushed out of the capital by African peacekeeping forces, but have waged a series of gun and grenade attacks, looking to overthrow the government and impose its strict version of sharia law on the country.
An offensive launched last year by African Union forces along with the Somali army has driven the group out of its strongholds in central and southern Somalia, while a series of U.S. UAV strikes have killed some of its top leaders.
Officials in Somalia said. on Saturday 03/28.205 gunmen who stormed a hotel frequented by government officials and dignitaries killing at least nine people are exchanging fire with government troops more than 12 hours later.
* Somali troops ended, Saturday on 03/28/2015 evening, the 16-hour siege at Maka Al-Mukaram Hotel in Somalia’s capital, during which gunmen killed 15 people, officials said.
** About 10 people were killed, on Friday 02/20/2015, and a dozen more wounded, including several government officials and lawmakers, when two explosions ripped through the entrance of Central Hotel in the Somali capital, officials said. The al-Shabab claimed responsibility.
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02/2012 – FOREIGN MILITANTS KILLED BY AN U.S DRONE IN SOMALIA
10/2011 – 65 KILLED IN MOGADISHU BLAST
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