UNITED NATIONS, March 19 (Xinhua) -- The UN Security Council on Wednesday "condemned in the strongest terms" a deadly terrorist attack on a hotel in central Somalia, saying that "any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable regardless of their motivation."
"The members of the Security Council condemn in the strongest terms yesterday's attack on a hotel in Bula Burde, Somalia, for which Al-Shabab has claimed responsibility," said a statement issued by the 15-nation council Wednesday night.
A suicide bomber in Somalia on Tuesday rammed a car packed full of explosives into a hotel in the southern town, killing several people, days after it was recaptured from Al-Shabab fighters, in an attack claimed by the armed group.
The blast in Bula Burde is the latest in a string of attacks launched in apparent retaliation to a new offensive by African Union (AU) troops seeking to capture bases from Al-Shabab.
The attack followed an assault on a military convoy near the Somali capital Mogadishu on Monday, which killed four Somali soldiers, reports said.
Al-Shabab, which is seeking to impose its version of Islamic law, was driven out of bases in the capital more than two years ago, but has continued to control swathes of countryside and smaller towns, which it uses as launch pads to strike.
The members of the Security Council expressed their condolences to the families of the victims, which included members of the Somalia National Army, the African Union peacekeeping forces in Somalia (AMISOM) and civilians, the council statement said.
"The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable regardless of their motivation," said the statement.
"The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Somali authorities in this regard," it said.