A senior official with Somali police force was among two killed in a car bomb attack in Mogadishu, the Somali capital on Thursday morning, local authorities said.

Abdishakur Hussein, the police officer, and another occupant lost their lives after an improvised explosive device concealed in their car went off around Muna hotel.

Al-Shabaab has immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which becomes the third of its kind in the capital within this month. Gen Ali Gaab escaped two similar attacks.

Mogadishu has been relatively calm in the past as the police stepped up measures to avert the frequent Al-Shabaab car bombs in the seaside capital that hosts the government.