CAIRO: Egypt has expressed its strong condemnation of the terrorist attack which targeted a hotel in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, which killed at least 21 people.
Egypt’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement, “Egypt affirms its full solidarity with Somalia in this painful affliction, stressing its total rejection of all forms of violence, extremism and terrorism.”
Police and military in Mogadishu announced on Sunday that Somali forces had concluded a siege in Hayat and freed 106 people, including women and children, according to Reuters.
Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabab militants launched the attack on the hotel on Friday, in a 30-hour operation.
On Sunday morning, despite the prevailing calm, roads remained closed amid a heavy security presence, and emergency personnel and demining experts sought to clear the building and remove rubble.
The hotel building was badly damaged in the exchange of fire between government forces and militants, leading to it collapsing in places and causing many people to worry about relatives inside when the attack has begun.
The hotel was a popular meeting place for government officials and there were dozens of people inside when armed men stormed it.
Somali National Police Commander Major General Hassan Abdi Mohamed confirmed that security forces managed to put an end to the attack, according to the Somali National News Agency.
“It is regrettable that innocent civilians were killed at the scene of the accident,” he added.
Al-Shabab confirmed in a statement that the group took hostages during the siege, including government and security officials.
The attack is the largest in Mogadishu since the election of Somalia’s new president, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, in May.