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Al Shabaab bomb blast and gun attack kills at least 16 in Mogadishu, Somalia

mogadishu attackAl Shabaab bomb blast and gun attack kills at least 16 in Mogadishu.

The attack, that continued throughout the night, began Wednesday evening, June 1st 2016, at Mogadishu’s Hotel Ambassador in Somalia.

After a suicide car bomber crashed into the gates of the hotel, gunmen proceeded to raid the hotel. Many were killed in the initial bomb blast, including two Somalian MPs – Abdullahi Jama Kabaweyne and Mohamoud Mohamed Gure.

In total the bomb and gun attacks are said to have killed at least 16 and injured a further 55. Most of those killed and injured were civilians.

Al Shabaab, a militant group affiliated with al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Though the African Union peacekeeping force, AMISOM, were able to push al Shabaab out of Mogadishu in 2011, the group have continued to carry out many attacks across Somalia, as well as in Kenya and Uganda.

In 2015, 700 people were killed in incidents involving explosive violence in Somalia, of these 64% (451) were civilians.

Al Shabaab’s explosive violence alone killed 477 people in Somalia, of which 71% (337) were civilians. 273 of these civilian deaths and injuries from explosive violence perpetrated by al Shabaab were carried out by IEDs. Al Shabaab were responsible for all IED events in Somalia last year where the perpetrator was identified.

IEDs are extremely lethal and are seeing wider and wider use. AOAV’s Explosive Violence Monitor 2015 found that of all IED attacks, the ones that posed the most danger were suicide attacks.

AOAV condemns the use of violence against civilians and calls upon all groups to reject the deliberate targeting of civilians. States must urgently address the threat of suicide bombings and other forms of IED attacks. Reports by AOAV show the increasing use and harm of suicide bombings around the world.  It is a growing reality that highlights the need for urgent preventative measures that States should establish – such as stockpile controls – to limit groups’ ability to produce these and other IEDs.