Attack at Somalia hotel – level 3
At least 12 people, mostly civilians, died in a hotel siege in the Somali capital of Mogadishu.
On Friday evening Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Shabab detonated at least two bombs outside the hotel before they entered. Rescuers saved some guests and staff members; however, an unknown number of gunmen seized hostages, and they held them inside the hotel.
Al-Shabab has a long-running conflict with the Somali government; the hotel was a popular location for government employees to meet. The group controls much of southern and central Somalia, and it’s extending its influence into government areas.
In recent weeks, Al-Shabab attacked targets along the Somalia-Ethiopia border, which raised concerns about its new activity. The attack was the group’s first in the capital since May and the election of Somalia’s new president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud.
Difficult words: siege (a situation when an armed force surrounds a place), affiliate (a group or organization connected or controlled by a larger one), hostage (a person who an enemy holds so that he can get something).
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