| USWorld

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Bombers target hotel in Somalia's capital

Email Newsletters

Sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, 8:24 p.m.

MOGADISHU, Somalia — Two car bombs exploded on Wednesday 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 a day after al-Qaida-linked Islamist rebels warned Mogadishu to brace for an attack.

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

Police Capt. 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.

Saed said security forces “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 claimed responsibility for the blasts immediately. The al-Qaida-linked Islamic rebels of al-Shabab 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-Shabab commander warned civilians to stay away from government buildings and sites controlled or owned by foreigners.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Watchdog counts $1 billion wasted in Afghanistan
  2. France, Russia iron out alliance against Islamic State
  3. Slaying in Venezuela spurs fears of political violence
  4. Russia vows to punish Turks financially
  5. South African judge OKs local trade in rhino horns
  6. Mexico seizes El Chapo’s planes, cars, houses
  7. Pope Francis plugs global climate talks in Kenya visit
  8. China to reorganize military under joint command
  9. Russia’s war room in multibillion-dollar Moscow control center grand, modernized
  10. Turkey releases recording of warnings to Russian plane
  11. Turkey shoots down Russian jet it says violated its airspace