Kenyan authorities on Tuesday vowed to crush Al-Shabaab militants who killed 14 people and injured 11 others in the country’s northeastern county of Mandera that borders Somalia .

Interior Security Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery told journalists in Nairobi that the dawn attack on quarry workers was a clear reminder that the insurgents and its collaborators are determined to disrupt and subvert Kenyans way of life.

“I take this opportunity to reiterate that Kenya shall never be cowed by these evil murderers and our resolve to vanquish them remains resolute,” Nkaisserry said.

He said the group of armed Al-Shabaab terrorists sneaked in the country from Somalia and raided a residential estate in Mandera town and blew up the gate of the estate, using improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
“The intention of the heinous murderers was to take siege of the quarters with the aim of executing the 150 residents of the estate,” Nkaisserry said.”If we had prior intelligence on the planned attack we could have stopped it.”
He said the police swung into action immediately after the IED explosion and engaged the attackers who had gained access into the estate and had started shooting residents at random.

“The swift response by the police repelled the attackers who fled back to Somalia, Unfortunately, 11 Kenyans were killed during the attack while three others succumbed to injuries while undergoing treatment,” the CS said.
He said the police managed to evacuate 136 residents who were facing imminent danger of slaughter by the terrorists who later claimed responsibility for the attack.

The quarry workers employer rented the house for them near a livestock market, about 2km from Mandera town, where the stonemasons return to sleep, as they were prohibited from living near the quarry.

Local authorities had ordered the workers and owners of the quarries to get separate residential houses to accommodate the miners after the militants killed 36 quarry workers in Mandera late last year.

Somalia-based Al-Shabaab militants have carried out several attacks in Kenya since Kenyan troops joined the effort in Somalia to battle the Al-Qaida-linked fighters in 2011.

Nkaisserry said eight out of the 11 injured have already been flown to Nairobi and are undergoing treatment, as a mopping-up security operation is underway in the area in the wake of the attack.

He appealed to residents in Mandera to report to security agencies anyone they might come across with bullet wounds, urging them to remain vigilant and share information that will help the police secure the country.

The government has been making efforts to improve security in the area. Analysts said Tuesday’s attack will dent the efforts to reclaim the area that seem to be slowly drifting to insecurity. Enditem


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