6 July 2014

Kenya: Death Toll Rises in Kenya Attacks

Photo: Kenya Red Cross
Lamu attacks that left property destroyed and over 60 people dead (file photo).

Two attacks in counties on the Kenyan coast have claimed more than 20 lives. The region last month saw a brutal raids claimed by Somali al-Shabab militants in which more than 60 people were killed.

The overall toll from two attacks on coastal Kenyan towns has risen to 21, according to information given by the Kenyan Red Cross on Twitter on Sunday.

It said the death toll from an assault by gunmen on the trading center of Hindi in Lamu county had climbed to 12. Earlier, the Red Cross said nine people had been killed in a similar attack, also late on Saturday evening, on the town of Gamba in Tana River county.

Lamu county commissioner Njenga Miiri said some 15 gunmen had raided Hindi and started firing at residents. Hindi is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of the town of Mpeketoni, where dozens where killed in an attack last month.

In the Gamba incident (photo above), Kenya's police chief David Kimaiyo said gunmen had attacked the police station. Five of those killed were inmates imprisoned at the station, according to a senior police officer speaking on condition of anonymity.

One police officer was reportedly also killed.

Al-Shabab reprisals

The identity of the perpetrators remains unclear, but attacks last month in Mpeketoni and a nearby village were claimed by al-Shabab fighters from neighboring Somalia.

Kenya has suffered a number of gun an explosive attacks since deploying troops to Somalia in October 2011 to help fight militants from the Islamist group.

In September last year, al-Shabab bombed the Westgate shopping mall in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, killing 67 people. Dozens more have died in smaller attacks elsewhere in the country.

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