A government official confirmed at around 02:00 (local time) on Wednesday, December 11, that a gun battle between security forces and militants in the vicinity of SYL Hotel in Mogadishu has concluded. He also said that security forces killed all five attackers, and a further five people have been killed including two civilians. Al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attack that began in the night of Tuesday, December 10. Approximately 82 people were rescued from the building.
A heightened security presence and lingering transportation disruptions are to be expected around the site of the attack in the coming hours. Further attacks are possible in the near term.
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 Mogadishu 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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