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Terrorist group claims responsibility for explosive attack on Nairobi hotel

Somalia-based extremists have claimed responsibility for a fiery attack on Kenya's capital of Nairobi.

Gunshots and fire broke out Tuesday afternoon both in and around an "upscale hotel" in the city, The Washington Post reports. The militant group al-Shabab has since claimed responsibility for what it called "an ongoing operation" in a call to BBC.

"Armed men" entered the hotel in an "affluent" neighborhood, and explosions and gunfire quickly rang out, witnesses tell BBC. Cars surrounding the hotel were burning as Kenyan special forces arrived at the scene. Medics also arrived at the hotel and started carting survivors away as officials evacuated and sealed off nearby buildings. There's no word on how many people are dead or injured.

In 2013, al-Shabab fighters attacked a Kenyan mall and killed 67 people. The Council on Foreign Relations categorizes the group as "capable of carrying out massive attacks in Somalia and surrounding countries despite a long-running African Union offensive against the Islamist group." The attack comes just a day after Al Jazeera published a story detailing how Kenyan soldiers have been "pushing al-Shabab fighters back into Somalia" and largely "oust[ed]" them from the country. Follow along with this story at BBC.