MOGADISHU, Somalia – The death toll has risen to 26 in an attack by Islamic extremists, who blew up the gate of a Somali hotel with a car bomb and took over the building for more than 14 hours before Somali forces killed the attackers.
Three Kenyans, three Tanzanians, two Americans and a Briton also were among the dead, said Ahmed Madobe, the president of Jubbaland regional state which controls Kismayo. Fifty-six people, including two Chinese, were injured in the hotel attack that began Friday night, he told reporters.
Somalia's Islamic extremist rebels, al-Shabab, claimed responsibility for the attack. Al-Shabab often uses car bombs to infiltrate heavily fortified targets like the hotel in Kismayo, which has been quiet in recent years.
Hong Kong unrest shifts to trade
Several thousand people marched in Hong Kong on Saturday against traders from mainland China in what is fast becoming a summer of unrest in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.
Violent clashes broke out at the end of the march between police and a group of mostly young protesters who say they believe peaceful demonstrations have failed to bring about change.
Demonstrations in the past month against a proposal to change extradition laws have reawakened other movements in Hong Kong. The protests have a common refrain: Hong Kong's government, led by a non-elected chief executive, is not addressing the people's concerns.
New Zealand runs 1st gun buyback
Dozens of Christchurch gun owners Saturday handed over their weapons in exchange for money, in the first of more than 250 planned buybacks around New Zealand after the government outlawed many types of semi-automatics.
Police said they paid more than $288,000 to 169 gun owners during the event. New Zealand lawmakers in April rushed through new legislation to ban so-called military-style weapons after a lone gunman killed 51 people at two Christchurch mosques in March.
Colombian bishop blesses violent city
A Catholic bishop in Colombia hopes holy water will curb violence in a city struggling with crime.
Rubén Darío Jaramillo Montoya traveled on a fire truck to some of Buenaventura's most crime-ridden neighborhoods on Saturday, sprinkling water that he had blessed in an attempt to thwart drug trafficking gangs and other illegal groups. He said the ceremony aimed to tell illegal groups that “you can't destroy the life of a community, we're united.”
Egypt re-opens pair of pyramids
Egypt on Saturday opened two of its oldest pyramids, about 25 miles south of the capital Cairo, to visitors for the first time since 1965.
Antiquities Minister Khaled el-Anany said tourists were are now allowed to visit the Bent Pyramid and its satellite pyramid in the Dahshur royal necropolis, which is part of a UNESCO Worlds Heritage Site.
The Bent Pyramid, which was built during the Old Kingdom of the Pharaoh of Sneferu, in about 2600 B.C., is unique in that it has two internal structures. El-Anany said the Bent Pyramid represents a transitional form of pyramid construction between the Djoser Step Pyramid (2667-2648 B.C.) and the Meidum Pyramid (also about 2600 B.C.)