Police instructed CNN the nation’s former protection minister, Mohamed Nur Galal, is confirmed useless within the assault. Officials didn’t present additional particulars and didn’t verify whether or not there have been extra casualties within the ongoing battle.
Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble despatched condolences following Galal’s loss of life.
“My heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the heinous terror attack in Hotel Afrik including Gen Mohamed Nur Galal who served his country with valor for over 50 years,” Roble mentioned by way of Twitter. “This attack is yet another reminder of the savage enemy we face. We must unite against terror.”
A automobile bomb exploded on the gate of Afrik lodge and was adopted by gunfire heard inside, Somali police captain, Ahmed Hassan, instructed CNN. The incident occurred round 5 p.m. native time (9 a.m. ET), Hassan added.
Gunmen from the al Qaeda affiliate Al-Shabaab gained entry to the constructing after the automobile bomb explosion on the gate, he mentioned.
There is an ongoing operation to rescue individuals from contained in the lodge, based on police.
The motive for the assault can also be unclear however Hassan mentioned a high army commander was contained in the lodge on the time of the assault. Other senior army officers and lawmakers had been additionally contained in the lodge, Hassan mentioned.
The lodge is frequented by members of Parliament, politicians and safety officers, however not foreigners.
Outside the lodge is the primary safety checkpoint to the airport and Halane base, which homes western missions, together with the US embassy.
Al-Shabaab has claimed accountability for the assault via an announcement broadcast by Andalus Radio, its mouthpiece channel. CNN has been unable to independently confirm this declare.
US troops in Somalia primarily prepare and advise native Somali forces as they battle Al-Shabaab. The US army additionally carries out airstrikes in opposition to the group and the native ISIS affiliate within the nation, killing a high Al-Shabaab chief in a focused strike in September.
Omar Nor reported from Mogadishu and Radina Gigova wrote from Atlanta, Georgia.