Mogadishu hotel attack: 6 MPs among 32 dead

Last Updated: Tuesday, August 24, 2010 - 17:35

Mogadishu: Islamist militants shot dead
30 people, including six members of parliament, in a suicide
attack on a Mogadishu hotel today, Somalia`s deputy Prime
Minister said.

The two militants from the Shebab insurgency disguised
as government security forces then blew themselves up to avoid
arrest after the attack on the hotel which was crowded with
Somali officials.

"Thirty people died in this ambush. Six of them are
members of the Somali parliament and four are Somali
government civil servants," Abdirahman Haji Adan Ibbi told
reporters after the deadly rampage at Hotel Mona.

"The 20 others are innocent civilians who died in this
horrible incident," he added.

An official and witnesses said to a news reporter on the
scene that two fighters from Shebab disguised as government
security forces smuggled themselves into the hotel and sprayed
gunfire on its occupants.

"They detonated the suicide vests they were wearing
when our forces surrounded the hotel," he said on condition of
anonymity.

The bold attack was the deadliest of its kind against
high-ranking officials from the Western-backed transitional
federal government since the al Qaeda-inspired Shebab launched
an offensive to conquer Mogadishu last year.

"They have no motive other than to terrorise the
Somali people. This is a deplorable act in this holy month of
Ramadan. It shows their brutality and lack of respect for
humanity," Information Minister Abdirahman Omar Osman Yarisow
said in a statement.

Parliament speaker Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden condemned
the attack when he spoke to a news agency from Nairobi.

"We condemn this terrorist attack against the Mona
hotel, in which a large number of MPs were staying," he said.

"This is the work of the Shebab, who are committed to
disrupting the efforts of the transitional federal government
which is pacifying the country," Sheikh Aden said.

"These terrorists acts will not stop."
The African Union mission in Somalia, whose more than
6,000 troops deployed in Mogadishu protect the TFG and support
its military operations against the insurgency also condemned
the attack.

"It is unfortunate that those opposed to the peace
process continue to kill innocent civilians even during the
fasting month of Ramadan which is one of the key pillars of
the Islamic faith which they claim to profess," a statement
said.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, August 24, 2010 - 17:35

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