Five civilians killed, some ‘decapitated’, in southeastern Kenya

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By Webdesk


The attack by al-Shabab took place in villages bordering Somalia, an area where the group often raids.

Five civilians have been killed by armed assailants who attacked two villages in southeastern Kenya, police said.

The attack on Sunday took place in the villages of Juhudi and Salama in Lamu County, which borders Somalia, the police source said.

The attackers also set fire to houses and destroyed property.

A 60-year-old man was tied with a rope and “had his throat slit, his house was burned with all belongings,” police said. Three others were similarly killed while a fifth victim was shot.

Resident Hassan Abdul said that “women were locked in the houses and the men were sent outside, where they were tied with ropes and slaughtered”.

A high school student was among the five killed, Abdul said, adding that “all the dead were chopped off and some of them had been beheaded.”

Another local resident, Ismail Hussein, said the fighters stole food supplies before leaving, shooting their arms in the air.

Police described the incident as a “terrorist attack”, a phrase they typically use to refer to raids by Somalia’s al-Shabab group.

Lamu is near Kenya’s border with Somalia and al-Shabab fighters regularly carry out attacks in the area to push Kenya to withdraw troops from Somalia, where they are part of an international peacekeeping force defending the central government.

Kenya first sent troops to Somalia to fight the al-Qaeda-affiliated group in 2011 and is now a major contributor to an African Union (AU) military operation against the group.

But it has faced a series of reprisals, including a bloody siege at Nairobi’s Westgate shopping center in 2013 that killed 67 people and an attack on Garissa University in 2015 that killed 148 people.

In Somalia itself, al-Shabab has continued to launch deadly attacks despite a major offensive launched last August by pro-government forces backed by the AU Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS).

ATMIS, which has 22,000 troops, has been aiding the Somali federal government in its war against al-Shabab since 2022, when it replaced the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

Last week, four people were killed in northeastern Kenya, with police saying al-Shabab was responsible. The incident occurred when a vehicle was escorting a convoy of buses between the towns of Banisa and Mandera. Another Banisa security team was attacked when it responded, police said.

On June 14, eight Kenyan police officers were killed when their vehicle was destroyed by an improvised explosive device in a suspected attack by Al-Shabab, police said.

According to police reports, an additional 10 people have been killed in attacks linked to al-Shabab in the past two weeks.



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