A deadly extremist attack on a beachside hotel in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu claimed the lives of six civilians and wounded 10 others on Friday night, according to police.
The siege, which lasted for six hours, was carried out by al-Shabab militants, who detonated a car bomb at the entrance of the Pearl Beach hotel and then stormed inside with guns and grenades.
Security forces responded to the scene and rescued 84 people who were trapped inside the hotel, which is popular with government officials and tourists. The Lido Beach area, where the hotel is located, is one of the most frequented places in Mogadishu.
Al-Shabab, an al-Qaida-affiliated group that seeks to overthrow Somalia’s internationally backed government, has claimed responsibility for the attack. The group has carried out similar attacks on hotels and other high-profile targets in Mogadishu in the past, often using suicide bombers as a first strike.
The attack on Friday night was condemned by Somali authorities and the international community as a cowardly act of terror that aimed to disrupt the country’s fragile peace and stability.