Somalia’s security forces are battling gunmen holed up in a building in Mogadishu, hours after a suicide car bomb attack on a busy street left at least seven people dead.
The attack was launched late on Thursday by suspected al-Shabab militants in an area lined with hotels, shops and restaurants.
The gunmen then seized a nearby building and were surrounded.
Exchanges of gunfire continued throughout the night in the capital.
Some 60 people have been injured and seven have died, a spokesman for the Aamin Ambulance service told the BBC.
A number of civilians have been rescued from the building, reports say.
There are fears that the death toll will rise further.
“There are still some armed men inside a building,” police officer Ibrahim Mohamed was quoted as saying on Friday morning by the AFP news agency.
The secretary-general of the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) Mohamed Moalimuu was inside the Maka al-Mukarama hotel with a colleague when they heard gunshots followed by a blast
The US has sharply increased its air strikes against the group since President Trump took power.
The US State Department says al-Shabab retains control over large parts of the country and has the ability to carry out high-profile attacks using suicide bombers, explosive devices, mortars and small arms.