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Thread: Kenya Mall Attack - Death Toll Rises to 68

  1. #1
    ***//\\*** femmeayitienne's Avatar femmeayitienne is offline
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    Jul 2004

    Kenya Mall Attack - Death Toll Rises to 68

    Nairobi, Kenya (CNN) -- Authorities in Kenya appeared close to ending a deadly siege Monday at an upscale Nairobi mall, where attackers have killed at least 68 people, injured 175, and are believed to still be holding about 10 people hostage.

    "All efforts are underway to bring this matter to a speedy conclusion," the Kenyan military announced on Twitter.

    It said that "most of the hostages have been rescued and security forces have taken control of most parts of the building."

    Earlier, police had tweeted that a "MAJOR assault" by security forces was ongoing.

    The developments come some two days after Al-Shabaab militants first stormed the shopping center, spraying bullets and unleashing chaos.

    There are believed to be between 10-15 gunmen involved in the attack, officials said.

    Sources within Al-Shabaab told CNN that nine names listed on a Twitter site -- now suspended -- were people who were among the alleged hostage-takers.

    Three of the alleged attackers are from the United States, two are from Somalia and there is one each from Canada, Finland, Kenya and the United Kingdom, according to the list.

    The FBI is looking into the claim that American citizens were involved the attack, but have not confirmed that.

    Similarly, a senior State Department official said that the United States is trying to determine whether any of the alleged attackers are American. But, the official said, authorities are becoming more confident American citizens were involved.

    Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed Sunday to hold those responsible for the violence, accountable.

    The tragedy is personal for the president; one of his nephews and his fiancee were among the dead.

    "They shall not get away with their despicable, beastly acts. Like the cowardly perpetrators now cornered in the building, we will punish the masterminds swiftly and indeed very painfully," Kenyatta said.

    Sporadic gunfire could be heard throughout the day Sunday, and at least one explosion. Those sounds were followed by periods of tense silence.

    Soldiers kept vigil outside the mall, guns dangling from their shoulders. Later in the day, helicopters approached.

    The Kenyan Red Cross tweeted that nine bodies were recovered Sunday night, bringing the death toll to 68.

    More than 175 were injured in the attack, Kenyatta said. He and other Kenyan officials visited hospitals Sunday morning.

    "No one should lose their life so needlessly, so senselessly and no family should have to receive news that their loved ones have been killed by a criminal bunch of cowards," the president said.

    The mall siege was the deadliest terror attack in Kenya since al Qaeda blew up the U.S. Embassy there in 1998, killing 213 people.

    Al-Shabaab, al Qaeda's proxy in Somalia, claimed responsibility, and said it was not backing down. In a message on its Twitter feed, the group said "all Muslims" were escorted from the mall before the attack.

    "When justice is denied, it must be enforced," it said in a tweet Sunday. "Kenyans were relatively safe in their cities before they invaded us & killed Muslims #Westgate"

    Since Kenya launched attacks against Al-Shabaab in Somalia in 2011, the group has hurled grenades at Kenyan churches, bus stops and other public places.

    Last year, the Kenyan military played a major role in handing Al-Shabaab forces a defeat when as part of a peacekeeping mission, they liberated the key Somali port of Kismayo.

    The attack Saturday targeted a popular weekend meeting spot. Kenyans and expatriates gather at the luxurious Westgate Shopping Mall on weekends to drink lattes, catch a movie or browse through the more than 80 stores.

    Police in Kenya grew irritated as people took to social media to describe what they were seeing and hearing.

    "If you must Facebook or tweet, then talk about football or your favourite music but NOT MISINFORM the public on security operations!" authorities said on Twitter.

    Three injured security forces were taken out of the besieged mall, but the severity of their injuries was unclear.

    By Sunday afternoon, at least 1,000 people had been freed from the mall, Kenyatta said. But some 30 people were believed to still be held.

    Later, that number fell to no more than 10, military spokesman Cyrus Oguna told CNN affiliate KTN.

    "The number that is still left in the building is very, very small," he said, without providing details on how people got out.

    One apparent hostage left the building Sunday, and said she had been hiding in the basement of the mall, KTN reported.

    Al-Shabaab vowed not to negotiate with Kenyan authorities.

    "The Mujahideen are still strong inside #Westgate Mall and still holding their ground," the group tweeted late Saturday.

    Israeli special forces were at the scene and were working with their Kenyan counterparts in the hostage crisis, Kenyan government sources told CNN.

    Kenyatta said several nations had offered help but "this remains an operation of the Kenya security agencies."

    State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu said there were reports of a white woman among the hostage takers. Kenyan intelligence officials were investigating the claims, he said.

    Esipisu was asked if the reported woman was thought to be the infamous Al-Shabaab-affiliated "White Widow," Samantha Lewthwaite. "Nothing is being ruled out," he said.

    But CNN terrorism analyst Peter Bergen said it was unlikely.

    "It would be very unusual for a woman to be involved in one of these operations," he said. "Typically these groups are misogynist. Their view is the woman should be in a home and shrouded in a body veil."

    Lewthwaite's husband, Germaine Lindsey, was one of the suicide bombers killed in the 2005 attack on London's transportation system. His Buckinghamshire-born widow is wanted by Kenyan authorities for her alleged role as an Al-Shabaab and al Qaeda-linked financier.

    A day of horror

    The calm was shattered around noon local time Saturday. Gunshots erupted as shoppers picked up groceries, savored lunch and browsed through the racks at stores.

    Before long, pools of blood smeared pristine hallways. Bodies lay strewn across the floor.

    Uche Kaigwa-Okoye was sipping coffee when he heard what first sounded like a fallen table, then the continuing rat-a-tat of gunfire. As the gunshots became louder, screaming crowds headed for the exits.

    He joined 20 people who took shelter for about five hours in a women's bathroom cubicle.

    "They had grenades, and it was really, really loud," he said of the attackers. He noticed tear gas in the hallways as well.

    "All of us felt like they were close," he said.

    As people texted family and friends outside the mall, word spread that nobody could be trusted. And even if the good guys could be sorted from the bad guys, the intermittent barrages of gunfire made any escape attempt seem futile.

    Sara Head, a Washington resident, experienced similar horror in the mall's parking garage. As her car pulled up, she heard gunfire. She crawled underneath and hid behind cars before getting into a stairwell.

    Eventually, the stairwell lights came back on and the door to a nearby supermarket opened. She dashed through, passed a nearby loading dock and fled to safety.

    "There was blood throughout the supermarket," Head said. "It wasn't clear if it was OK to exit."

    Several Kenyan agencies made a plea for blood donations.

    "Hospitals are appealing for more blood, the response is incredible but more is needed," tweeted Francis Kimemia, secretary to the Cabinet.

    Foreigners among casualties

    Most of the casualties are Kenyan, authorities said. But the mall is popular with expatriates and foreign nationals, who were among those killed and injured.

    Those killed include three British citizens, two French nationals and two Canadians, including a diplomat, their governments said.

    Several American citizens were among the wounded, including Elaine Dang, a University of California, Berkeley, graduate.

    Dang worked as the general manager for Eat Out Kenya, which confirmed her injuries on its Twitter and Facebook pages.

    A State Department spokeswoman said Sunday there were five Americans among the injured, but none among the dead.

    "Obviously it's an enormous offense against everybody's sense of right and wrong," said Secretary of State John Kerry. "It represents the seriousness and the breadth of the challenge we face with ruthless and completely reckless terrorists, and we're going to pursue them."

    The U.S. Embassy asked personnel to stay in place Sunday and avoid the Westgate Mall area and any large gatherings. All U.S. citizens in Kenya were urged to register online so the embassy can provide them with updated information on travel and security -- and can contact them in case of emergency.

    Israel's Foreign Ministry said one national was slightly wounded and three escaped. A cafe at the mall is owned by an Israeli, but the ministry does not believe the mall was targeted because of that.

    The Ghana president's office said literary figure Kofi Awoonor was among those killed in the attack.

    "Such a sad twist of fate to place Prof at the wrong place at the wrong time," President John Mahama said in a statement.

  2. #2
    Loyalty to Loyalty Taj's Avatar Taj is offline
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    Mar 2006
    Fix up, look sharp!
    things are bad all around

  3. #3
    where de crix Oneshot's Avatar Oneshot is offline
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    Apr 2003
    Brick City, NJ
    Kenya attacked the Somalians to do the US bidding, well I hope the US will support the Kenyans in their time of grief, if this excalates any further.. Ethopia should watch out..

  4. #4
    Heri DSP's Avatar DSP is offline
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    Nov 2005
    A.K.K.S. and mz_JazE like this.
    Unfortunately, stupidity and ignorance can be entertaining.

    Goodle this you 50 year old crusty vagina

    --oh yes jigger boozers ever lasting wahr with the "lovers of empresses and hafrican queens" should be ashamed ~jigga boozy aka Carlo Pagan

    --I like disrespect especially ones that dont involve cursing and nugga nugga nugga watch subject matter ~jigga boozy aka Carlo Pagan

  5. #5
    Sagattarius notorious saga's Avatar notorious saga is offline
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    Feb 2006
    Trini Scholar killed in Kenyan mall terrorist attack

    Story Updated: Sep 23, 2013

    Trinidad national Ravindra Ramrattan was among several people killed in a terrorist attack and siege at a Kenyan shopping mall that entered its third day today.

    Ramrattan, who was awarded the President's medal gold in 2002, was living and working in Nairobi, Kenya since September 2011. He was employed as a research economist.

    It was reported that several people were killed and many others held hostage in an upscale shopping mall in Nairobi where al-Qaeda-linked militants attacked.

    The Red Cross in Kenya said the death toll in the attack at Narobi's Westgate Shopping Mall was at least 68.

    The Kenya Defence Forces posted on its Twitter account last night that "most of the hostages have been rescued'' and that four security forces had taken control of "most parts of the building.''

    Ramrattan, of Monroe Road, Cunupia, attended Presentation College, Chaguanas. He attained distinctions in mathematics, chemistry, physics and general paper at the Advanced Level examinations and was named President's gold medal winner.

    Teachers and pupils were informed of his passing this morning.

    Principal Gary Ribiero said, "This morning we told the pupils at assembly and we had a moment of silence in his memory. At 11am, we are having a function for all scholarship winners and we will have a moment of silence for him. His photograph was placed on the corridor for all to see him. The pupils and teachers were saddened by his death. The school flag is at half-mast," he said.

    A Facebook page was created in memory of Ravindra Ramrattan last night.

    An invitation was extended to Ramrattan's friends and relatives to attend a service at the Buddhist Temple in Nairobi.The Facebook post states, "Please join us this evening at the Buddhist Temple in Nairobi, starting at 5pm, to remember him and his incredible presence in our lives. Feel free to invite all those whose lives have been touched by him and who may want to attend."

    At the family home today, Ramrattan's parents Bisnath and Parbatie Ramrattan said they had few details on the events leading to the death of their son. They first knew something was wrong with Ramrattan's friends called on Saturday to tell of the attack at the mall.

    The friends said they were able to escape along with hundreds of other shoppers, but could not find Ramrattan. The parents said they received another telephone call on Sunday night to say that Ramrattan had been killed in the mall. The parents, business owners said they were making arrangement to bring their son's body home.

    According to a Reuters report today "Thick smoke poured from the besieged Nairobi mall where Kenyan officials said their forces were closing in on Islamists holding hostages on Monday, three days after a raid by Somalia's al Shabaab killed at least 62 people.

    It remained unclear how many gunmen and hostages were still cornered in the Westgate shopping center, two hours after a series of loud explosions and gunfire were followed by a plume of black smoke, that grew in volume from one part of the complex.

    Kenya's interior minister told a news conference that the militants - all men, though some wore women's clothing during the assault - had set a fire with mattresses in a supermarket on the mall's lower floors. Two "terrorists" had been killed on Monday, he added. Another assailant had died on Saturday.

    The gunmen came from "all over the world", Kenya's military chief said, adding: "We are fighting global terrorism here."

  6. #6
    SweetfuhDayz agroDOLCE's Avatar agroDOLCE is offline
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    Jun 2005
    Planet Earth
    prayers go out to the injured and the loved ones of those killed. sad

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