Monday, August 20The Voice of London

LIVE: 170 Held Hostage In Mali Hotel

Freed hostages run towards security forces. Photo Credit: Harouna Traore/AP

A terrorist attack on the Raddison Blu Hotel in the Malian capital of Bamako has left 22 people dead and 14 wounded. Al-Qaeda linked militants stormed the building and held 170 hostages until special forces over-ran the building, killing two of the attackers.

The 9-hour siege began at around 7am when militants entered the upmarket hotel in cars with diplomatic plates. Gunmen reportedly stormed the complex shouting ‘Alahu Akbhar’ and allowed some hostages to leave if they could successfully recite verses from the Qu’ran.

Six Russians, three Chinese, an American, a Belgian, a Sengalese and an Israeli were shot dead by attackers.

Twelve members of Air France crew were successfully freed during the siege by security forces, as news continued to unfold surrounding the Paris attacks last week that left 129 people dead. No link between the two terrorist incidents has been confirmed, though.

UN Peacekeeping troops and Malian armed forces were supported by both US and French security services as they cleared the building floor-by-floor.

This is the Malian capital’s second terrorist attack this year, after attackers murdered five five people in a bar in March.



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  • A spokesperson for Raddison Hotel’s has confirmed that 140 guests and 30 members of staff have been locked in the hotel by at least three gunmen.
  • As gunmen reportedly move from floor to floor in The Raddison Blu Hotel in Bamako, Mali’s capital, one French national has been reported dead in the siege.
  • Two Malians have been killed, according to UN sources.
  • A source has told Reuters that some hostages, able to recite verses of the Qu’aran have been released. The gunmen reportedly entered the hotel in a diplomatic car and stormed the building shouting ”Allahu Akbar”.