Somalia: At least six killed in double 'suicide bombing' at Mogadishu hotel

Two bombers among dead after police shoot and kill attackers as they try to make their way into the hotel

Mogadishu

Two car bombs exploded last night outside a hotel in Somalia's capital that often is used by foreigners and government officials, killing at least six people and wounding eight, police said. The explosions occurred one day after al-Qa'ida-linked Islamic rebels had warned Mogadishu to brace for an attack.

General Abdihakim Saed, Somalia's police chief, told a local radio station two men who appeared to be suicide bombers also died during the attack when they tried to force their way into the Jazeera Hotel as the cars exploded, and security forces shot and killed them.

Police Captain Mohamed Hussein told The Associated Press that shortly after the first explosion occurred outside the heavily guarded hotel near Mogadishu's international airport civilians and hotel guards rushed to the scene. At that point, he said, the second car bomb exploded, causing most of the casualties.

Still, Saed said the security forces had “foiled” what could have been a much deadlier New Year's Day attack. “Our forces were on high alert for about two days after we received information about an imminent attack,” he said.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the blasts. However, the al-Qa'ida-linked Islamic rebels of al-Shabaab frequently stage lethal attacks in Somalia near the seat of government and at sites popular with foreigners.

In a radio message on Tuesday, a senior al-Shabaab commander warned civilians to stay away from government buildings as well as sites controlled or owned by foreigners. The commander, Ali Mohammed Hussein, said attacks were imminent in Mogadishu.

The Jazeera Hotel has been the target of previous terrorist attacks. In September 2012, it was the scene of an assassination attempt on Somalia's president on his second day in office.

Al-Shabaab once controlled Mogadishu, but it was ousted from the capital in August 2011. Despite some security gains made in Mogadishu over the years, the militants still penetrate the seaside capital to carry out suicide attacks.

Neighbouring Kenya has been the scene of multiple terrorist attacks since the country sent its military to Somalia in 2011 to fight al-Shabaab. In September, the group claimed responsibility for an attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi that killed 67 people. Al-Shabaab said it was in retribution for Kenya's involvement in Somalia.

AP

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
healthSteven Shaw - the 'Buddha of Breaststroke' - applies Alexander Technique to the watery sport
News
A poster by Durham Constabulary
news
Sport
Cameron Jerome
footballCanaries beat Boro to gain promotion to the Premier League
Arts and Entertainment
Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Arts and Entertainment
Emily McDowell Card that reads:
artCancer survivor Emily McDowell kicks back at the clichés
Sport
footballShirt then goes on sale on Gumtree
Arts and Entertainment
Twin Peaks stars Joan Chen, Michael Ontkean, Kyle Maclachlan and Piper Laurie
tvBadalamenti on board for third series
Life and Style
tech
Sport
Standing room only: the terraces at Villa Park in 1935
football
Sport
Ben Stokes celebrates with his team mates after bowling Brendon McCullum
sportEngland vs New Zealand report
News
Amal Clooney has joined the legal team defending 'The Hooden Men'
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine