The Radisson Blu hotel, left, that was stormed by gunmen during an attack on the hotel in Bamako, Mali, Friday, Nov. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)
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Suspected Islamist gunmen stormed a luxury hotel in Mali's capital Friday, firing automatic weapons and seizing more than 100 guests and staff in a hostage-taking that has left at least 27 people dead.Special forces carried out a dramatic floor-by-floor rescue at the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, according to local television and security sources, eventually ending the siege about nine hours after it had begun.Two US special forces troops who happened to be at the nearby US embassy for meetings assisted in the rescue of six Americans.The men are believed to have entered the hotel around 0700 GMT at the same time as a car with diplomatic plates, with many guests still in their rooms.Malian soldiers, police and special forces were at the scene as a security perimeter was set up, along with members of the U.N.'s MINUSMA peacekeeping force in Mali and the French troops fighting extremists in west Africa under Operation Barkhane.France has more than 1,000 troops in its former colony, a key battleground of Operation Barkhane, a counter-terror mission spanning five countries in Africa's restive Sahel region.
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