Mali: Hostages freed at Radisson Blu Hotel

Rescue operations led by security forces in Mali’s hotel have ended after hostages freed.

Latest reports said Malian security forces in co-action with French and American troops have ended a rescue operation of several hours after five stars hotel Radisson Blu was taken into hostage. The hotel situated in the capital Bamako was stormed by gunmen who took at least 170 people as hostages.

Following the raids, 27 people and three attackers had been killed in the attack. US Special Forces helped at least six Americans amongst the hostages of the assailants. Gunmen shouting « Allahu Akbar », or « God is great », in the morning opened fire outside the hotel in the centre of the capital before rushing inside. Al-Mourabitoun, an armed group that has had ties to al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying that it carried it out « in coordination with [the] Imarat al-Sahra group and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb [AQIM] ».
Reports said the attackers drove up to the hotel in vehicles bearing diplomatic licence plates, thereby gaining easy access. « About 10 gunmen arrived early in the morning and shot all the guards in front of the Radisson, » business owner Garba Konate told Al Jazeera.


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