Gunmen attacked a luxury hotel in Libya earlier this week, killing 10 people. Early reports suggested that at least five guards and five foreigners were killed. This attack was on the Corinthia Hotel Tripoli, which is located next to the Mediterranean sea. The branch of ISIS in the city claimed responsibility for the attack, which involved a car bombing.
Crucible, a Virginia-based security group, confirmed that one of its contractors was killed in this attack. The contractor was a U.S. citizen, and the Department of State confirmed this death. However, the department said that it is unable to share more details on the attack at this time.
Essam al-ass, a security spokesman in Tripoli, said that a Frenchman and an American were among the five foreigners who were killed in the shooting. The other foreigners who were killed in the hotel shooting were Asian. At this time, however, authorities are not giving the nationalities of the Asians who died.
The commander of the Special Deterrent Force, Mahmoud Hamza, said that this situation is under control. He confirmed that they have not been able to find the gunmen from the shooting and that foreigners were killed. He did not elaborate on it, however.
One security official who was able to escape from the gunmen said that they fired in his direction when he opened the door to look out. After this, he fled with the other guests into the parking lot area. Once they got to the parking lot, a car bomb went off just 100 meters away. He said that the explosion from the car bomb occurred after the protection force came in and started to open fire on the gunmen.
A member of the hotel staff, who refused to be named out of fear that he would be targeted, said that the hotel had Turkish, British and Italian guests. That being said, the hotel was mostly empty at the time of the attack. It is odd that ISIS would attack a hotel during its slow season.
It is possible that the gunmen were coming after Omar al-Hassi, the prime minister, who has the support of the militia. He typically resides in the hotel, but there are conflicting reports as to if he was inside when the attack happened. This same hotel was attacked in 2013 during the abduction of former prime minister Ali Zeidan.