Brit is one of 26 victims killed in Somalia hotel terrorist attack launched by Islamic car bomber and gunmen
- At least one Briton confirmed dead by a bomb attack on a hotel in southern Somalia
- The death toll has now risen to 26 victims including Americans and Kenyans
- A local journalist named Mohamed Sahal has also been confirmed as dead
At least one Briton has been confirmed dead after a suicide attack and a firearm attack by Al-Shabaab militants in a hotel in southern Somalia, a security officer said.
The death toll from the attack has risen to 26, including Kenyans, Americans, a Brit and Tanzanians, said the president of Jubbaland, Ahmed Mohamed said Saturday.
Two journalists and an employee of the UN organization have also been confirmed among the dead.
Authorities said a suicide bomber rammed a vehicle full of explosives at the popular hotel Medina in the southern port city of Kismayo before several heavily armed gunmen drove in while shooting on the way.
Four people were killed during a car bomb attack in March in the Somali capital, which was also claimed by Al-Shabaab (stock photo)
The attack is the last in a long line of bombing and attacks by the group linked to Al-Qaeda.
"We have confirmed the deaths of seven people, including a former local government minister and a legislator," said Abdi Dhuhul, a security officer. & # 39; The toll may increase because the attack has not yet ended. & # 39;
Witnesses said among the dead a well-known social media activist, her husband and a local journalist.
& # 39; The blast shook the popular hotel Medina, formerly called Cascasey, in the center of Kismayo, & # 39; said security officer Abdiweli Mohamed.
& # 39; Several gunmen came in and started shooting, but the security forces responded quickly and participated in a firefight with the terrorists in the building, & # 39; he added.
The attack is the last in a long line of bombings and attacks by Al-Qaeda-affiliated group Al-Shabaab in Somalia. Pictured: the southern Somali port city of Kismayo (stock photo)
& # 39; The explosion was very large & # 39 ;, witness Hussein Muktar said.
& # 39; There is chaos in it, I saw several dead bodies taken from the stage and people flee from the nearby buildings, & # 39; said Muktar.
The Somali journalist union SJS confirmed the death of local journalist Mohamed Sahal and social media activist Hodan Naleyeh.
& # 39; The relatives of the local journalist Mohamed Sahal have confirmed his death and I get the social media activist Hodan Naleyeh and her husband also died in the blast & # 39 ;, another witness said, Ahmed Farhan.
& # 39; It is a very sad day for Somali journalists & # 39 ;, the trade union secretary general, Ahmed Mumin said in a statement.
Shabaab claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement.
& # 39; Mujahidin fighters carried out a martyr's death at one of the hotels where the apostate officials of the Jubaland government are housed & # 39 ;, said the group, referring to an autonomous southern zone in the troubled country whose capital is Kismayo .
According to various sources, most of those staying at the hotel were politicians and traders prior to upcoming regional elections.
Shabaab fighters have fought more than a decade to overthrow the Somali government.
The militant group originated from Islamic courts that once ruled central and southern Somalia and an estimated 5,000 to 9,000 men.
In 2010, the Shabaab confirmed their loyalty to Al Qaeda.
In 2011, they fled from positions they once held in Mogadishu and have since lost many strongholds.
But they remain in control of large rural parts of the country and continue to wage a guerrilla war against the authorities.
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