A Big explosion hit Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, as some militants storm popular Hotel Ambassador following the news that Garrissa attack mastermind has been killed, a witness has told Reuters news agency.
The explosion was followed by sporadic gunfire and Al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabaab group has confirmed it was behind the blast that happened outside the hotel.
After the blast, some gunmen entered inside popular Hotel Ambassador in Somali’s capital on Maka Al Mukaram, a major street filled with hotels, restaurants and banks in the heart of the city.
The armed militants shot people on the top floors of the hotel at sight until the country’s forces who entered in gun battles with the militants finished the raid.
At least ten people have been killed by the car bomb and gunshot raid in the hotel situated in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu.
A tweet about the explosion and shooting in Somalia’s capital, Mogadish reads:
— Omar Nor (@Omaar_nor) June 1, 2016
Another local media tweeted the video of the blast as seen above.
— Somalia Live Update (@HassanIstiila) June 1, 2016
Earlier, the security minister in Somalia’s Jubaland region confirmed that the suspected mastermind of the deadly assault on Kenya’s Garissa University College has finally been murdered.
Abdirashid Janan at a press briefing in the Somali port city of Kismayo said Mohamed Kuno was murdered alongside four other people. The Jubaland government had the bodies of the men, he added.
The security minister of Somalia’s Jubaland region also stated that the former “most wanted man” was slaughtered when troops attacked the convoy in which he was travelling in Somalia’s port city of Kismayo.
It was also disclosed that more than 15 people, including four senior leaders of militant Islamist group al-Shabab, lost their lives during the operation. The raid was carried out by troops from the governments of Somalia and Jubaland, said Abdirashid Janan.
The murdering of Mohamed Kuno, the alleged architect of Garissa University college massacre, is a huge blow to al Shabaab and to those fighting the group. The Kenyan government offered a reward of $215,000 (£149,000) for his capture following the assault which killed 148 students last April.
Kuno, who was linked to a good number of attacks on Kenyan soldiers fighting al-Shabab, was a Kenyan national who moved across the border to Somalia in 2007.
Al-Shabaab’s attack on Garissa University College in neighboring Kenya in April 2015 which was reportedly planned by the Kenyan-born, killed 148 students. It was the deadliest attack in Kenya since al-Qaeda’s bombing of the US embassy in Nairobi in 1998, which killed hundreds of people (213).
Kenya received Sh4.2 billion from the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) a few days ago to beef up the fight against al Shabaab.
AMISOM is a peace-keeping mission operated by the African Union in Somalia. It has been providing grants to support Kenya’s security budget.
The war in Somalia has seen Kenya bolster its spending on security in the last three years in a bid to secure its borders against the militant group.