25 January 2017 – The United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) has condemned the coordinated suicide bombing attack earlier today at a hotel in Mogadishu for which Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility and which reportedly killed dozens of people.
According to the United Nations, the attack, on the Dayah Hotel (known locally as the Dayax), reportedly killed dozens of Somali civilians and soldiers, while wounding many more. The hotel is located near the Presidential palace and is frequently visited by lawmakers in the capital.
In an interview with UN News, Joseph Contreras, the spokesperson for the Mission, said the attack provides fresh evidence of the violent extremists’ desperate attempts to derail Somalia’s electoral process. Moreover it reflects the terrorists’ frustration over their inability to sabotage the recent voting for seats in the two Houses of Somalia’s new Parliament.
As for the scene on the ground, he pointed out that first responders arrived at the hotel targeted by the attack “quite quickly and brought the situation under control.”
“The latest figures that we have been seeing range from between 15 and 20 dead, some of whom were the attackers themselves, some of them Somali soldiers,” Mr. Contreras said, adding that perhaps about half of were civilians and among the dozens of injured were at least 5 journalists. He was not aware if any lawmakers were visiting the hotel.