UPDATE: At least twelve dead in Ivory Coast hotel attack

Published March 13th, 2016 - 04:52 GMT
The beach near Grand-Bassam. (AFP/Sia Kambou)
The beach near Grand-Bassam. (AFP/Sia Kambou)

Heavily armed gunmen have staged an attack on a hotel in the Ivory Coast beach resort of Grand-Bassam, which is popular with Westerners with some reports saying that 12 people were killed during the assault.

Witnesses said bursts of gunfire were heard on Sunday as the attackers, who were “heavily armed and wearing balaclavas, fired at guests at the L’Etoile du Sud (Southern Star), a large hotel that was full of foreign expats.

An unnamed police source said at least 12 people, including four Europeans, were killed during the attack, Reuters reported.

However, there is as of yet no official confirmation of the number of casualties.

Grand-Bassam is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) east of commercial hub Abidjan.

Attacks in recent months on luxury hotels in the capitals of neighboring Mali and Burkina Faso have left dozens of people dead, leaving West African nations scrambling to boost security in the face of "terrorism".

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