UPDATE:CNN is now reporting at least 15 dead and 25 injured, with most of those killed and injured civilians passing by and customers of nearby shops and a gas station. Fighting still is happening inside the hotel, Somali police Capt. Aden Dahir said.
Horrific news coming out of the Somalia capital this morning. And for those who aren’t interested in learning about what happens “over there,” it’s worth remembering it is this same type of radical extremism that the Obama administration is paving the path for into our own homeland.
Huge explosion rocks hotel in Somali capital Mogadishu followed by gunfire, in suspected al-Shabab attack https://t.co/GtqwqNoEMy
— BBC Breaking News (@BBCBreaking) June 25, 2016
More from Fox News:
A team of gunmen took hotel guests hostage after storming the building in a Somalia’s capital city, Mogadishu on Saturday, police have revealed.
A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle at the gate of the Nasa-Hablod hotel near the capital’s busy KM-4 junction, followed by a second explosion heard inside the hotel as gunmen fought their way in, police said. At least four bodies were seen outside the hotel, one officer said.
The number of hostages was unclear. The attackers hurled grenades and fired machine guns to resist security forces trying to reach them on the second floor, police captain Mohamed Hussein said.
Security forces killed at least two of the attackers who have deployed snipers on the hotel rooftop, Hussein added.
The attackers “took positions behind blast walls and sandbags; fighting is still ongoing,” he said, as gunfire could be heard in the background.
A witness to the attack, Ali Mohamud, said the attackers randomly shot at guests at the hotel.
“They were shooting at everyone they could see. I escaped through the back door,” he said.
Yusuf Ali, an ambulance driver, told The Associated Press that he evacuated 11 people injured in the attack to hospitals.
“Most of them were wounded in crossfire,” he said
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. The Somalia-based, al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab extremist group has been waging a deadly insurgency across large parts of Somalia and often employs suicide car bomb attacks to penetrate heavily fortified targets in Mogadishu and elsewhere.
In early June, an overnight siege by extremist gunmen at another hotel in the capital killed least 15 people, including two members of parliament. Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for that attack.
The latest attack comes during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, during which extremists often step up attacks in this volatile East African country.
So far, no one has tried to blame guns, workplace violence, a right-wing Christian nut job, global warming, white privilege, a closet gay struggle or #Brexit for what appears to be an Islamic extremist attack. While today’s attack is in a place that seems like a totally different world to many Americans, it has a common element with what just happened within our homeland two weeks ago: radical Islam.
We send prayers to the victims and will share more as we know it.
[This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]