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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Somalia blast: Mogadishu hotel rocked by bomb - BBC News

Somalia blast: Mogadishu hotel rocked by bomb - BBC News


At least 10 people have been killed in a huge bomb explosion at a hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu.
A BBC correspondent in the city says a lorry was used to attack the Jazeera Palace Hotel near the airport.
Ambulances have been collecting the dead and wounded in what he describes as one of the worst scenes of destruction he has seen in Mogadishu.
Somali militant Islamist group al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attack.
The al-Qaeda linked group said it was responding to assaults by an African Union force and the Somali government.
The blasts came as President Barack Obama was leaving Kenya for Ethiopia, at the end of a trip during which he had discussions about dealing with the threat from al-Shabaab.
Soldiers serving in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) patrol outside a mosque during Eid al-Fitr prayers 17/07/2015
Soldiers from the African Union mission patrol the Somali capital
International diplomats often stay at Jazeera Palace Hotel, which has been targeted in the past. It also accommodates several embassies including those of China, Qatar and Egypt.
"A suicide car bomb exploded at the gate of Jazeera Hotel," Major Nur Osoble, a police officer, told Reuters news agency.
A government security officer was quoted by the AFP news agency as saying hotel security guards were among the dead.
Al-Shabaab is battling Somalia's government for control of the country. While security in Somalia has improved, the group still attacks Mogadishu regularly.
On Saturday, a member of the Somali parliament and an official from the prime minister's office were killed in separate attacks in the capital claimed by al-Shabaab.
In recent days the group has lost two of its remaining strongholds - the south-western town of Bardere and the south-eastern town of Dinsor. Both had been under Shabaab control since 2008.
The militants have also targeted neighbouring countries, killing almost 150 people in an assault on Garissa University College in Kenya in April.
map showing who controls which parts of Somalia 

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