Willesden man killed in terror attack in Somalia
- Credit: Archant
A man from Willesden has been named as a victim of a terror attack by al-Shabaab in a hotel in Somalia.
Abdullahi Jama Kabaweyne, 61, a Somali MP with dual British citizenship, died during an overnight siege by extremist gunmen at the Ambassador Hotel in Mogadishu.
At killed 15 people, including Mohamoud Mohamed Gure, 59, who lived in Holloway and also had dual British citizenship, died during the attack.
The assault started when a vehicle laden with explosives detonated outside the hotel on Wednesday evening and then three militants stormed inside the building.
Paying tribute to Mr Kabaweyne, Ali M Gutale said: “So Abdullahi, on behalf of everyone here in Mogadishu, I’d like to say thanks for being a man for the country. “His beautiful spirit will live on through out Mogadishu, no one knows when it is their time to go.
“May Allah grant his soul eternal peace.”
Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, who was visiting Somalia, sad the extremist organisation “cannot be allowed to take hold” in the east African country.
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He expressed his sympathies for the families of Mr Kabaweyne and Mr Gure, and the others who lost their lives as he visited Mogadishu.
The UK is deploying about 70 military personnel to the country to help support the African Union’s mission in Somalia.
Following talks with president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and prime minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, he said: “A secure and stable Somalia is the UK’s top priority in east Africa and is in our own national security interests.
“Britain is providing security support to Somalia and to the African Union to tackle al-Shabaab, a terrorist organisation that cannot be allowed to take hold.
“This week’s al-Shabaab attack is yet another reminder of the importance of the work we are doing to support Somalia and to increase security across the region.”
The UK is the only European Union country to maintain an embassy in Somalia and has taken a lead in co-ordinating international support for the fledgling Somali government, with a £200 million commitment including measures for security reforms.
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