Conflict & Justice

Al Shabaab militants attack Kenyan police base


Somalia's al-Shabaab have welcomed the appointment of Ayman al-Zawahri as the new head of al-Qaeda, the global terror group to which al-Shabaab have pledged allegiance.



Gunmen from Al Shabaab stormed a police base in Kenya's Wajir district on Thursday, killing at least six people and kidnapping three, including two Kenyan officials, the BBC reported.

Al Shabaab is an Al Qaeda-linked Somali Islamist group, and has been responsible for several attacks since October, when Kenya sent troops into Somalia in pursuit of Al Shabaab rebels, the BBC reported.

According to the local police in the town of Gerille, six people were killed on Thursday, including three policemen, a civil servant and a primary school teacher, the Associated Press reported. It was also reported that a pregnant woman was killed in the attack, according to a relative.

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In a statement from police spokesman Eric Kiraithe, about 100 suspected Al Shabaab fighters were a part of the attack, Reuters reported.

Al Shabaab also took the blame for a raid on Wednesday evening, in which seven officers and officials were killed in a surprise attack.

"Also seized during the raid were Kenyan vehicles, communication equipment and a cache of weapons," said a statement by Al Shabaab, the BBC reported.

The press release from Al Shabaab did not state the number of hostages taken over the two days but noted that the identities of those kidnapped would soon be released, the AP reported.

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"In response to the aggressive Kenyan invasion against the Muslims of Somalia, special forces from Harakat Al Shabaab Al Mujahideen's elite units raided a Kenyan Administration Police camp," the statement said, the AP reported. "Taken by surprise and unable to respond effectively to the attack, seven Kenyan administration police and government officials were immediately killed, while others were taken prisoners."

According to the AP, the militants disabled police communications to stop any reinforcements from arriving after the attack was launched.