Two blasts, gunfire target hotel in Somalia’s Mogadishu

Somalis walk past the wreckage of vehicles outside a beachfront restaurant, the site of a previous attack, Somalia, Friday, Jan. 22, 2016. (AP)

Two loud explosions rocked the center of Mogadishu on Friday followed by automatic gunfire, police and an AFP correspondent said, with Somalia’s Shabaab Islamists claiming they had attacked a hotel.

“We heard a loud explosion near the SYL hotel,” police official Mohamad Adan told AFP, saying there was also gunfire.

The first blast took place at 7:45 pm (1645 GMT), with a second erupting shortly afterwards in an attack which was claimed by the Al-Qaeda linked Shabaab movement.

“Members of the mujahedeen have carried out an attack on the SYL hotel near the presidential palace. The attack began with a suicide bombing followed by gunfire,” the group said in a brief statement on its official Instagram account.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:50 - GMT 06:50