Farah Abdi Warsameh/AP
A Somali man stands outside the Pearl Beach Hotel after a fatal attack on Saturday.
Six civilians and three members of the security forces were killed in a late-night attack by militants on a seaside hotel in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu, state media reported.
Security forces reacted to an attack on the Pearl Beach hotel in Lido Beach by al-Shabaab militants late on Friday, according to the Somali state news agency SONNA, killing four attackers.
The military rescued 84 civilians from the hotel and was praised by the government for its “quick and effective response,” SONNA reported.
Broken windows, bloodstains and debris from a restaurant were found on Saturday at the site of the attack.
Ugandan officials say the onslaught follows a deadly al-Shabaab attack late last month on an African Union military base in Somalia, about 120 kilometers southwest of Mogadishu, in which at least 54 people were killed. A Ugandan soldier has died.
Shattered window glass was found at the site of the attack, along with blood stains and debris.
Al-Shabaab is the world’s largest and most active al-Qaeda network, according to US African Command. The group had controlled large swaths of Somalia since last year before being pushed back by government counterattacks, according to Reuters.
But militants have continued deadly attacks across the country with the aim of overthrowing the central government and establishing rules based on a strict interpretation of Islamic Shariah law.
US forces have carried out numerous airstrikes in Somalia, resulting in dozens of casualties for al-Shabaab. Among them were 30 al-Shabaab fighters killed in one attack in January, and three others in February, with a total of 24 soldiers killed.