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Somalia: Al-Shabab attacks hotel at Mogadishu beach

June 10, 2023

Somali forces ended a hotel siege in Mogadishu, claimed by the al-Shabab group.

An ambulance is seen outside the perimeter of a rescue operations in Mogadishu on June 9, 2023 during an attack.
Somali security forces moved to the scene of the al-Shabab attack, in an effort to neutralize itImage: Hassan Ali Elmi/AFP/Getty Images

Police in Somalia said six civilians were killed and ten others injured in an attack at a beachside hotel in the capital Mogadishu.

They managed to end the siege in the early hours of Saturday morning.

"Six civilians were martyred in the attack... and 10 others were wounded. Three brave members of the security forces were martyred during the rescue operation," police said in a statement.

The al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab group claimed responsibility for the attack on the affluent Pearl Beach Hotel at Lido Beach.

The Somali National News Agency reported "security forces have successfully neutralized" militants.

What do we know about the hotel attack?

Witnesses said they heard gunfire and explosions at the hotel on Lido Beach. Two suicide bombers blew themselves up at the entrance of the hotel, the DPA news agency reported, citing police officer Mohamed Dahir. Gunmen followed, storming the building.

Other hotel guests were also taken hostage, security official Hassan Ali told DPA.

The siege of the hotel continued into the early hours of Saturday. The official Somali news agency posted on Twitter photos purportedly showing security personnel extracting civilians.

Yaasin Nur was at the restaurant and told the French news agency AFP it was "full of people as it was recently renovated."

Explosion in the south kills score of children

Elsewhere in Somalia on Friday, a mortar shell exploded near a town in the Lower Shabelle region, killing some 27 individuals, mostly children.

The children were playing with an intact mortar shell which then exploded. Over 50 others were injured.

The unexploded shell was used by Somalia's warring factions, residents said.

"We request the government and aid agencies to clear mines and shells from the area," Abdi Ahmed, deputy district commissioner of Qoryoley, told reporters.

Al-Shabab has been waging a jihadi insurgency against the Somali central government for more than 15 years.

The al-Qaida-linked jihadi group seeks to establish its own rule based on its strict interpretation of Islamic law in the fragile Horn of Africa country.

Al-Shabab extremists: Why is the group terrorizing Somalia?

rmt/sms (AFP, dpa, Reuters)