December 10, 2019 / 5:46 PM / a month ago

Al Shabaab gunmen attack hotel near president's residence in Somali capital- police, group

MOGADISHU, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Al Shabaab gunmen attacked a hotel in Somalia’s capital near the president’s residence on Tuesday and fighting was still going on, police and the militant group said.

“We thought they were police but they started hurling grenades and firing us when they neared and so we exchanged fire at the gate of the hotel,” a police officer who gave his name as Ahmed told Reuters.

Abdi-Aziz Abu Mus’ab, al Shabaab’s military spokesman, confirmed the group was behind the attack and said its fighters were inside the compound of the hotel, which is popular with government officials and lawmakers. (Reporting by Abdi Sheikh and Feisal Omar; Writing by George Obulutsa, Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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