A witness told local television ORTM said he saw a man arrive on a motorcycle who "started shooting at the crowd" followed by "two or three people" who came in another vehicle. He estimated there were three or four assailants.
Officials said two people had been killed, including a French-Gabonese citizen and another whose nationality was not yet known.
According to the security ministry, "one of the terrorists was able to escape, after being injured". "Campement Kangaba is blocked off and an operation is under way", Security Ministry spokesman Baba Cisse said by telephone. In predominantly Muslim Mali, people have been fasting from sunrise to sundown for three weeks.
The hotel is frequented on weekends by foreigners working in Mali, especially those from the French and United Nations missions.
French President Emmanuel Macron was informed about the attack and was following the events carefully, according to an official in his office.
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Earlier this month, the U.S. Embassy in Mali warned Americans of "a possible increased threat of attacks against Western diplomatic missions, places of worship, and other locations in Bamako where Westerners frequent".
A spokesman for French forces in Mali declined to immediately comment. He said there are no French troops based in Bamako, but about 2,000 French troops based in northern Mali fighting Islamic extremists.
No immediate information is available yet on casualties from the attack, though Reuters notes the attack was still continuing.
That attack was jointly claimed by both the regional al-Qaida affiliate and a group known as Al Mourabitoun, which was founded by Moktar Belmoktar after he fell out with al-Qaida leaders.
The rural resort sits on the outskirts of Bamako, where the Radisson Blu hotel was the target of a previous terror attack that left more than 20 people dead in November 2015.
Associated Press writers Krista Larson in Dakar, Senegal, and Angela Charlton in Paris contributed.
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