Special Reports

Shabaab suicide assault team strikes in Somali capital


Shabaab fighters train for a suicide assault. Image from a Shabaab video released in January 2015.

Shabaab, al Qaeda’s official branch in Somalia and East Africa, killed and wounded several members of the Somali government, including several senior officials in a suicide attack at a hotel in the capital of Mogadishu this afternoon.

The attack began as a car packed with explosives was detonated outside of the Central Hotel, a gathering place for Somali parliamentarians and members of government, Garowe reported. A suicide bomber used the resulting chaos to enter the hotel and detonate his explosive vest inside of a mosque.

Two members of parliament and the deputy governor of Banadir were among 10 people reported killed in the attack. Somalia’s deputy prime minister and minister for marine transportation were also wounded, according to Reuters.

Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, Shabaab’s military operations spokesman, claimed credit for the attack. “We targeted government officials in the hotel; this is part of our operation in Mogadishu,” he told Reuters.

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