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15 killed in an attack on a hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu

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MOGADISHU — At least 15 people have been killed in an attack on a hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu that was swiftly claimed by Al-Qaeda-affiliated Al Shabaab militants, police said.

The death toll includes guards, civilians and militants.

A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle at the gate of a hotel in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, which was followed by a second explosion as gunmen fought their way inside the building.

Armed group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for Saturday’s attack on the Nasa Hablod hotel in a statement distributed through social networks online.

A spokesman for Al Shabaab said the death toll was at least 20 guards and civilians — numbers of casualties cited by the Government are often lower than those reported by Al Shabaab.

The assault was led by a suicide attacker driving a car laden with explosives, Al Shabaab said in a statement distributed through the Telegram smartphone app.

The Naasa Hablood hotel in southern Mogadishu is often used by politicians and members of the Somali diaspora visiting the city.

Somali security forces cordoned off access to the neighbourhood in which the hotel is located, an AFP photographer said.

Saturday’s attack came just three weeks after another assault quickly claimed by Al Shabaab on the city’s Ambassador hotel left 10 dead, including two MPs, when a huge car bomb ripped the front off the six-storey building.

Agencies

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PM congratulates Nepali national cricket team

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KATHMANDU— Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has congratulated Nepali national cricket team for being able to clinch the International T20 series.

PM Oli in a tweet extended best wishes and congratulations saying he was very happy to know Nepal’s win over the UAE by 14 runs in the third match of the series.

Winning T20 series is another landmark success for Nepali cricket, he said, adding, “It is big achievement for Nepal’s cricket. I would like to heartily congratulate entire members of Nepali cricket squad”.

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