From Mumbai hotel siege to Kabul attack: Major hotels a prime target for ambush around the world

Gunmen stormed Intercontinental hotel in Kabul killing at least 18 people, including foreigners, sparking a twelve hour fight with security forces that left terrified guests scrambling to escape and parts of the building ablaze.

world Updated: Jan 22, 2018 08:57 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse, Paris
Kabul,Kabul Hotel Attack,Intercontinental Hotel
Afghan security personnel take position at the rooftop of the Intercontinental Hotel during a fight between gunmen and Afghan security forces in Kabul on January 21, 2018.(AFP)

Major hotels popular with tourists or Westerners across the globe have been prime targets of jihadist groups for years. (Kabul hotel attack highlights)

Here are some of the major attacks over the past decade:

- Kabul: wave of Taliban strikes -

Gunmen stormed the Intercontinental hotel in Kabul on January 20, 2018, opening fire on guests and staff and taking dozens hostage. At least six people including a foreigner were killed. The attack was claimed by the Taliban.

On August 1, 2016, a bomb-laden truck struck at the Northgate, a hotel for foreigners in the Afghan capital. After a seven-hour siege by Taliban fighters, one policeman is killed.

On January 4 2008, the luxury Serena hotel in the heart of Kabul is targeted in a suicide bombing that left seven people dead. The Norwegian foreign minister was in the hotel at the time.

On March 20, 2014, a Taliban squad hit the same hotel, leaving nine dead including an AFP journalist and members of his family.

- Mogadishu: Shabaab attacks -

Fighters from the Islamist insurgent group Al-Shabaab have carried out a wave of attacks against hotels in the Somali capital over the past 10 years, using car bombs and commando raids.

Between 2015 and 2017, more than 100 people were killed in about a dozen attacks, including a double car bombing on the Dayah Hotel near the Somali parliament and state house that left at least 28 people dead.

- Ivory Coast: beach resort under fire -

March 13, 2016: Nineteen people, including foreigners, were killed when gunmen stormed the resort of Grand-Bassam, firing on the beach and hotels just 20 kilometres away from the main Ivory Coast city of Abidjan. Al-Qaeda’s North African affiliate, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), claimed responsibility.

- Burkina Faso: jihadist raids -

On January 15, 2016, 30 people, mainly Westerners, were killed in jihadist raids on the upscale Splendid hotel and a restaurant in Ouagadougou. The attacks were claimed by the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Murabitoun group of one-eyed Algerian jihadist Mokhtar Belmokhtar. The assault lasted about 12 hours before being ended by Burkina Faso armed forces backed by French troops.

- Mali: nine-hour siege -

On November 20, 2015, a siege at the luxury Radisson Blu hotel in Mali’s capital Bamako left 20 people dead, including 14 foreigners. Guests and staff were held by gunmen for nine hours. Al-Murabitoun claimed the attack.

- Tunisia: beach shooting spree -

On June 26, 2015, a student went on a shooting spree in the resort town of Sousse, in the northeast of Tunisia. A total of 38 tourists, including 30 Britons, were killed in the attack, which was claimed by the Islamic State group.

- Libya: Islamic State assault -

The Islamic State group claimed a January 27, 2015 assault on Tripoli’s luxury Corinthia hotel. Nine people including five foreigners were killed in the raid.

- Baghdad: coordinated suicide bombings

On January 25, 2010, at least 36 people were killed and more than 70 wounded in coordinated suicide bombings against three hotels in Baghdad, the Palestine, the Babel and Hamra.

- Jakarta: double attack -

On July 17, 2009, nine people died in a double suicide bombing targeting the luxury Ritz-Carlton and Marriott hotels in Jakarta’s business district.

- Mumbai: 166 dead -

A series of coordinated gun and bomb attacks across Mumbai that targeted top hotels, the main railway station and a Jewish centre left a total of 166 people dead.

The horror of the carnage played out on live television around the world over three days as commandos battled the heavily armed gunmen. India blamed the attacks on Pakistan-based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba.

- Islamabad: truck bombing-

On September 20, 2008, a truck driven by a suicide bomber and loaded with 600 kilos of explosives drove into the Marriott hotel in Islamabad, killing 60 including the Czech ambassador.

First Published: Jan 22, 2018 08:53 IST