Siege in Somali capital ends, attackers killed - 3/1/2019 9:26:13 AM

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US airstrikes have killed another 26 members of the al-Shabab extremist group in Somalia, officials said on Friday, in a continuation of recent attacks that had already killed 55 earlier this week. I have just seen them in hospital, they are in a critical condition.

The attack is the latest in a long line of bombing and assaults the Al-Qaeda linked group has carried out.

Security forces on Friday ended a siege by Al-Shabaab insurgents almost 24 hours after jihadists mounted an attack in the Somali capital Mogadishu that left at least 19 dead.

Mohamed Hussein says an operation to clear the buildings has begun and bodies have been found. At least two soldiers have been seen leaving the area on stretchers.

The overnight attack began with a pair of auto bombs exploding in a popular area of Mogadishu where Somalis were relaxing at restaurants and hotels Thursday evening.

Haile said the area around the hotel is among the most heavily guarded streets in the city but the terrorists have been able to stage repeated attacks by bribing police or threatening their families.

According to the police, a group of gunmen then tried to access the hotel but were killed by armed guards.

The Maka al-Mukarama road is the busiest road in Mogadishu.

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"The security forces rescued dozens of civilians in the hotel and nearby buildings". An unknown number of al-Shabab militants had remained holed up in a building near a hotel in Mogadishu since Thursday.

The death toll from Thursday's twin auto bombs in the area has climbed to more than 30 people, according to admission records from three hospitals.

Some of the wounded lost limbs, Sadiya Yusuf, a nurse at Daru Shifa, one of the hospitals treating victims, told AP news agency.

Another 60 people were wounded in the violence.

Shrugging off a surge in U.S. airstrikes against its membership, the al-Shabaab terror group, al Qaeda's powerful local affiliate, said it was responsible for one of the most brazen attacks on the Somali capital in recent months.

Attacks claimed by Islamic extremists frequently happen in the Horn of Africa nation. Al-Shabaab has targeted the building before, but Thursday's attack appears to be their bloodiest success.

The U.S. has dramatically increased airstrikes against al-Shabab since President Donald Trump took office. The US military command for the African continent reported carrying out 50 strikes in Somalia in 2018.

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