General Mohamed Nur Galaal and a former minister of state are among those who have been killed in the ongoing siege at Hotel Afrik in Mogadishu amid fears of rising casualties as security forces engage the militants holed up in the hotel.

Security guards manning the hotel and auto-rickshaw drivers who operate around the hotel are thought to have been the first casualties.

A vehicle packed with explosives ripped through the entrance of the hotel located along the airport road at about 5 pm local time paving way for the militants who stormed the hotel.

They are suspected to have made their way into the rooms of the three-story hotel. Gunfire can still be heard from the scene as initial reports indicate security forces are yet to enter the hotel.

There is no official comment yet from Somali authorities on the terrorist attack.