An attack staged by gunmen at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Mali continued Friday afternoon, local time. President Barack Obama said he was monitoring the situation at the luxury hotel that left at least three dead, with attackers reportedly having taken 170 people hostage. 

Malian state television reported that 80 people who had been in the hotel at the time of the attack have now been freed from the situation, which Obama said he had been briefed on by national security adviser Susan Rice, according to the Associated Press. As of 1:30 p.m. local time -- 8:30 a.m. EST -- the Rezidor Hotel group, which operates the Radisson, said 125 guests and 13 employees were still in the hotel, according to the AP. The hotel, located in the Malian capital of Bamako, was stormed by gunmen yelling "God is great!" in Arabic, according to the BBC.

Malian troops reacted quickly. People fled the violent scene near the hotel along a dirt road, and soldiers in full combat gear directed them toward safety. Local television has since shown armed troops in what seems to be the lobby of the hotel, which is popular with foreign business travelers and airline crews.

Images of the tense situation in Bamako, Mali, have begun to surface. Posted below are photos of the situation at the 190-room luxury property:

Mali Security forces drive near the Radisson hotel in Bamako, Mali, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Reuters/Adama Diarra

Malian forces were quick to react to the attack in Bamako.

mali forces More security forces responding in Bamako, Mali, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Reuters / Adama Diarra

Air France said in a statement that a crew staying in the hotel had been freed. One hostage told the Guardian, "The police and security forces helped us get out [of] the building. There are still lots of people in there. I also saw bodies in the lobby. It was absolutely horrible."

mali hostage A still image from video show a hostage rushed out from the Radisson hotel in Bamako, Mali, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Reuters / Reuters TV

mali lobby A still image from video shows the lobby of the Radisson hotel in Bamako, Mali, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Reuters / Reuters TV

Forces in Bamako pointed people fleeing the scene toward safety.

mali Malian security forces evacuate two women from an area surrounding the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Getty Images / Habibou Kouyate / AFP

It was estimated that some 125 guests and 13 staff members were remaining in the hotel, according to the Associated Press.

mali Malian troops take position outside the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Getty Images / Habibou Kouyate /AFP

mali Malian troops take position outside the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako on Nov. 20, 2015. Photo: Getty Images/ Habibou Kouyate / AFP