A suicide bomber drove a vehicle loaded with explosives into the Asasey Hotel in the port town of Kismayo, after which several heavily armed gunmen forced their way inside on Friday, July 12. The ordeal lasted 14 hours before authorities regain control.
The Shabab, an Islamic rebel group with ties to Al-Qaeda have claimed responsibility for the attack that killed at least 26 people and injured 56. This group wishes to overthrow Somalia’s government, claiming the President, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed is an American “puppet”.
President of the Jubbaland region Ahmed Mohamed Islam, has said that among those killed are foreign Nationals, three Kenyans, one Canadian, one British, two Americans and three Tanzanians. And according to witnesses among those killed was well known social media activist and local journalist Hodan Nalyeh along with her husband and unborn child.
Two Chinese citizens were also injured during the attack which lasted for fourteen hours before the security forces came to the rescue.
Iid Badal Mohamed, a former Somali ambassador to the United Nations has stated that he believes the motive behind the attack was because it was known to host senior politicians. Along with this information it is believed the attack coincided with a meeting of local elders and politicians at the hotel.