Somali officials announced at approximately 08:13 (local time) on Saturday, July 13, that the complex attack on the Hotel Asasey in Kismayo has ended. According to initial reports, around 20 people were killed in the siege; the casualty count is expected to rise as recovery operations continue. The assault was initiated on Friday, July 12, by the detonation of a suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (SVBIED) followed by several gunmen barricading themselves into the hotel. Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for the assault
Al-Shabaab continues to exercise effective control over large zones in the south and center of Somalia and attacks from the group are frequent across the country, including in Mogadishu. The group often targets government officials and military infrastructure in a bid to topple the West- and UN-backed government and impose its own strict interpretation of Islam in Somalia.
Individuals in Kismayo are advised to avoid the affected area, monitor developments to the situation, remain vigilant for militant activity, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
The security environment in Somalia remains complex. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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