(10-06-23) MOGADISHU — The death toll rises to at least 15 and dozens are wounded in the continuing Al-Shabaab siege of the Pearl Beach Restaurant in Mogadishu’s Lido Beach, as the harrowing conflict enters its sixth hour. The attack began on Friday evening, with the time in Mogadishu now marked at 2:30 am.
The assault, involving explosives and a small group of Al-Shabaab fighters, is reportedly still active with an estimated three attackers continuing their fight inside the hotel. The hotel, a popular spot for locals and government officials, has been transformed into a scene of devastation and horror, the normalcy of a Friday evening shattered in the most brutal way.
Emergency services remain at the ready outside the hotel, their sirens a grim counterpoint to the gunfire and explosions echoing from within. The wait for families and friends who have reported missing relatives is agonizing, every new burst of gunfire heightening their fear and despair.
The security situation in Mogadishu has been escalating with recent events, including an explosion caused by an improvised explosive device (IED) earlier on Friday at a key security checkpoint in the Kaaran District. Today’s attack has amplified existing tensions and raised grave concerns over the capital’s security infrastructure.
The question of how the armed militants were able to infiltrate such a highly secured area, located mere metres from the heavily guarded embassies of the UAE and Turkey, is a pressing one. It underscores the urgent need for a review and overhaul of existing security measures.
As the city of Mogadishu enters the early hours of the morning, the siege at the Pearl Beach Restaurant continues, casting a pall of fear and uncertainty over a city already too familiar with violence and loss.
More updates to follow.