Somali forces end siege at upscale Mogadishu hotel

Al-Shabaab terror group claims responsibility for attack that killed 21, wounded 117.

Somali forces end siege at upscale Mogadishu hotel

Somali security forces on Sunday ended a 30-hour siege of an upscale hotel in the capital Mogadishu, police said.

The forces had been trying to clear the Hayat Hotel of attackers belonging to the al-Shabaab terror group since Friday evening, who stormed the building.

Health Minister Ali Haji Adan told reporters that at least 21 people were killed, and 117 others wounded in the attack.

Adan said the condition of 15 of the wounded was critical, and the government will mobilize all means to provide them medical care.

Police chief Abdi Hassan Mohamed Hijar said the security forces rescued 106 people from the site, including women and children.

Meanwhile, the militant group, which claimed responsibility for the siege, said it killed 63 people and wounded 107 others. The group has been fighting the Somali government for more than a decade, and wants to establish its own rule based on a strict interpretation of Islamic law.

The uptown hotel, frequented by government officials and humanitarian workers, is said to have sustained heavy damage during the gunfight.