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Friday, March 02, 2012

AL SHABAAB ASSAULT IN MANDERA ENCOUNTERS "THE PUBLIC"


TWO people, including an assailant, died  and eight others were injured in Mandera  town yesterday morning  following an attack by a suspected al Shabaab militia group. Three armed Somali militiamen raided a shop in the trading centre and shot a Kenya police reservist several times in the chest as he attended to his customers. 

Mandera DC Benson Leparmorijo said the three armed attackers stormed the shop in a busy street near the Banisa matatu stage in the border town and appeared to have been looking for the reservist. Immediately after the shooting they tried to escape on foot but members of the public who had witnessed the incident gave chase  and apprehended two of them. They disarmed them and heaped old tyres on one of them who they set on fire. Police saved the other suspect from the mob baying for his blood and took him to Mandera police station where he is being interrogated by detectives and anti-terror police officers.

"On realising that his colleague had been overpowered, one of the fleeing assailants hurled back a hand grenade to the pursuing  crowd causing eight of them severe body,” the administrator added. Leparmorijo said a loaded Ceska pistol and unexploded hand grenade were recovered from the burned attacker.  Those injured by the grenade are receiving treatment at Mandera district hospital.

A witness Amina Yussuf who owns a shop near the one of the shot reservist said the attackers were young men aged between 19-25 years and were masked. She said the attackers appeared to know their target. Mandera town council chairman Mohamed Adan Khalif said the daring attempt by the public to give chase was a sign that the public is dissatisfied with security personnel. The DC said the attacker who managed to escape disappeared toward the border Bulla-Hawa town.

The incident comes barely two months after other attacks left dozens of security personnel dead.