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'Islamists' attack Kenyan coastal town

saward

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#1
15 June 2014 Last updated at 22:41

Suspected Islamist militants have attacked hotels and a police station in the Kenyan coastal town of Mpeketoni, military officials say.
Witnesses reported seeing buildings on fire and hearing gunfire in the town, which is near Lamu island.
It is not yet clear if there are any casualties.

Kenya has suffered a number of militant attacks since 2011 when its forces entered neighbouring Somalia to combat al-Shabab fighters.
Kenya's Standard newspaper said on its website the attackers had stolen weapons and vehicles from the police station, which was on fire.
It said local residents had fled to nearby forests.

The paper also quoted a witness as saying he had counted six bodies in the street, but this could not be confirmed.
Van hijacked
Kenyan army spokesman Major Emmanuel Chirchir said gunmen entered Mpeketoni, a busy trading centre, and started "shooting people".
The "assailants [are] likely to be al-Shabab," Major Chirchir said.
He said surveillance aircraft were looking for the attackers.

Local police chief Hamaton Mwaliko told Reuters that the gunmen had hijacked a van in nearby Witu town to carry out the attack.
"They raided Mpeketoni police station first," he said.
"Some hotels in the town are on fire. We don't know how many casualties are there for now. We understand the attackers have already fled but our officers are pursuing them."
Mwanaisha Hamisi, Kenyan Red Cross co-ordinator for the region, said gunfire was first reported at 20:30 local time (17:30 GMT).

Nearby Lamu island is a popular tourist destination with ancient architecture that is listed as a Unesco World Heritage site.

BBC News - 'Islamists' attack Kenyan coastal town
 

saward

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#2
UPDATE
16 June 2014 Last updated at 06:46

At least 34 people have died after suspected Islamist militants attacked hotels and a police station in a Kenyan coastal town, police say.
Witnesses in Mpeketoni said gun battles went on for several hours and reported seeing buildings set on fire.

The town is close to Lamu island, which is a well-known tourist resort.
Kenya has suffered a number of militant attacks since 2011 when its forces entered neighbouring Somalia to combat al-Shabab fighters.

The BBC's Yusuf Dayo in Nairobi said the attack started at 20:30 local time (17:30 GMT) on Sunday as locals were watching a football World Cup match on television.

Local residents told the BBC that the attackers had hijacked a van and used it to attack various locations across the town.
Witnesses said gunmen, who had their faces covered, threw explosives into the local police station before entering and stealing several weapons.
 

saward

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#3
Still on going.

17 June 2014 Last updated at 08:53

Kenya attacks: Al-Shabab raid village near Mpeketoni

At least 10 people have been killed in a new attack by Islamist militants near Kenya's coastal town of Mpeketoni, local police say.
They say the gunmen raided at least one village overnight.

Somalia's al-Shabab group said it had carried out the attack, telling Reuters that its "operations in Kenya will continue".

At least 48 people died after the al-Qaeda-linked group attacked hotels and a police station in the town on Sunday.
Al-Shabab said it was revenge for the presence of Kenyan troops in Somalia and the killing of Muslims.

Kenya sent troops to Somalia in 2011 to help the weak UN-backed government defeat the militants.
High alert

"We raided villages around Mpeketoni again last night," al-Shabab spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab told Reuters on Tuesday.
He was later quoted by the AFP as saying that the militants "have been going to several places looking for military personnel". He said most of those killed were police officers and wildlife wardens.

Mpeketoni is on the mainland near Lamu island, a well-known tourist resort. But the town itself is not a tourist destination.
Kenya has been on high alert recently following warnings that al-Shabab was planning more attacks.

The US and UK have issued advisories to their nationals to keep away from parts of the Kenyan coast.

BBC News - Kenya attacks: Al-Shabab raid village near Mpeketoni
 

Ivan67

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#4
Attacked in the middle of a football game. Now I am no fan of football, I shit bigger than those puffers but really that is just something you do not do its like an unspoken rule around the world.
 

saward

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#5
Latest.

17 June 2014 Last updated at 14:39

Kenya attacks: 'Women abducted' near Mpeketoni
The BBC's Dennis Okari says that targeting villages rather than towns marks a shift in al-Shabab's tactics
At least 12 women were abducted during the latest attack on Kenya's coast, which also left 15 people dead, residents have told the BBC.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has blamed "local political networks" for the overnight raid on two villages near the town of Mpeketoni.
But Somalia's al-Shabab group had earlier said it was behind the attack.

At least 49 people died in a separate raid on hotels and a police station in Mpeketoni on Sunday.
Al-Shabab said it was revenge for the presence of Kenyan troops in Somalia and the killing of Muslims.
Kenya sent troops to Somalia in 2011 to help the weak UN-backed government defeat the militants.
'Politically motivated'

The attacks were "well planned, orchestrated and politically motivated ethnic violence against the Kenyan community", President Kenyatta said in a national address on Tuesday.
"Evidence indicates that local political networks were involved in the planning and execution of a heinous crime," he added.
He did not give further details of the suspected attackers. However, he said the police in Mpeketoni were given advance intelligence about the attack, but did not act on it.

The Kenyan Red Cross says around 50 people are still missing from Sunday's raid on Mpeketoni. The body of a 49th victim was taken to the town on Tuesday.
"There's no time to mourn, we're just burying [the victims]," a resident told the BBC's Anne Soy in the town.

"We raided villages around Mpeketoni again last night," al-Shabab spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab told Reuters news agency on Tuesday.
He was later quoted by the AFP news agency as saying that the militants "have been going to several places looking for military personnel". He said most of those killed were police officers and wildlife wardens.

New tactic?

Kenyan police said the gunmen raided two villages in the Poromoko district near Mpeketoni late on Monday.
The authorities said the militants jammed a telecommunication system before the killings to prevent villagers from raising the alarm.

In Sunday's attack, al-Shabab appeared to target men, in many cases leaving their wives and children unharmed.
The BBC's Dennis Okari in Nairobi says this would be a new tactic for the group.

Mpeketoni, near Lamu Island, is not a tourist resort. It appears the attackers were not interested in foreigners or their interests, our correspondent says.
After last year's Westgate attack in Nairobi - al-Shabab's most deadly raid in Kenya - the group received a lot of criticism for killing women and children.
For fear of losing support from sympathisers, perhaps there is a change in the style of attacks and targets are more profiled, our correspondent says.

Kenya has been on high alert recently following warnings that al-Shabab was planning more attacks.
The US and UK have issued advisories to their nationals to keep away from parts of the Kenyan coast and hundreds of British tourists were evacuated last month.

Last week, the UK closed its consulate in the port city of Mombasa.

BBC News - Kenya attacks: 'Women abducted' near Mpeketoni
 

saward

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#6
The economic fall-out from terrorism.


Kenya tourist trade wrecked by terror fears: Numbers plummet after extremist groups warn visitors to the country 'do so at their own peril'

• 80 per cent of hotel rooms reportedly empty in Mombassa, Kenya
• Al Qaeda carried out two massacres in villages close to a holiday island
• Terror group Al Shabab carried out a series of bomb attacks
• Warned tourists they come to the country 'at their own peril'
• Tour operators stopped sending travellers to the country last month

By Sean Poulter
Published: 00:57, 18 June 2014 | Updated: 04:15, 18 June 2014

British tourists are turning their backs on Kenya because of the threat of terrorism.
Militants linked to Al Qaeda carried out two massacres in villages close to a holiday island this week, claiming more than 60 lives.
Terror group Al Shabab, which has carried out a series of recent bomb attacks, warned: ‘Kenya is now officially a war zone and any tourists visiting the country do so at their own peril.’

Some tour operators, including Thomson, stopped sending travellers to Kenya in May after the first of the bombings.
In a normal year, more than 180,000 Britons would travel to the East African country for its beaches, safaris and wildlife.
But visitor numbers have plummeted – with up to 80 per cent of hotel rooms reportedly empty in Mombasa, the country’s second-largest city after the capital, Nairobi.

Kenya’s tourist board in London has tried to play down the threats. It confirmed that gunmen had raided Majembeni village, a rural farming community about ten miles from Kenya’s coast and 40 miles south of Mokowe, where many holidaymakers take a boat to Lamu, a popular tourist spot.

But a spokesman said: ‘Majembeni village has no international tourist facilities and no tourists were involved in the incident.
‘Lamu Island, one of Kenya’s primary tourist resorts, is in no way affected by this attack and neither is any other part of the Kenya coast. The majority of visitors travelling to Lamu arrive by air into the local airport.’

Somali group Al Shabab confirmed it had carried out the latest attack, telling Reuters that its ‘operations in Kenya will continue’ in response to the presence of Kenyan troops in Somalia and the killing of Muslims.
Spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab said it had raided villages around Mpeketoni, and he claimed most of those who were killed while watching a World Cup match in a hotel were police officers and wildlife wardens.
Thomson said all outbound flights up to October 31 have been cancelled and anyone with a booking should contact the company.

A spokesman added: ‘Customers will be able to amend their booking to an alternative holiday, any on sale season for either long haul or short haul destinations, as long as the holiday is booked by the end of June.
‘If the cost is less than their original holiday, they will be refunded the difference.
‘If it’s more expensive we will pay £50 per person towards the extra cost as a gesture of goodwill.
‘If we are unable to secure an alternative holiday, then a full refund will be offered.’

A spokesman for rival operator Thomas Cook said: ‘We monitor travel advice closely and are contacting the small number of customers with forward bookings to the affected areas that are travelling over the next few weeks to discuss their options. We will liaise with our experienced overseas team and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and update on changes in advice.’

.........................................................................................

Interestingly the situation is not helped by various reports of the incidents being part of internal political in-fighting.


Kenya attacks 'not terrorism' claims president as tourism fears grow
Uhuru Kenyatta ignores al-Shabaab claims it carried out twin strikes that left 60 dead and instead blames “local political networksâ€

By Mike Pflanz
4:18PM BST 17 Jun 2014

Back-to-back attacks close to Kenya’s coast that killed 60 people over two days were the work of local political activists and not international terrorists, Kenya’s president has said.

In a live televised statement, Uhuru Kenyatta ignored claims from Somalia’s al-Qaeda army that it was behind the raids and instead attempted to shore up his political standing by blaming opposing politicians.
He said “local political networks†had arranged the “ethnic violence†to force people from Mr Kenyatta’s Kikuyu tribe from the town that was targeted, Mpeketoni near Lamu. He named no one and gave no details of investigations against anyone.
There was immediate disbelief and outrage at the president’s statement in Lamu, the string of islands popular with international tourists that lie to the east of Mpeketoni.

“He is crazy, he is trying to turn all Kenya against him and his Kikuyus. This is like 2007,†said Hassan Ahmed Ali, a retired bank worker watching Mr Kenyatta’s speech in Lamu. He referred to the intertribal violence that swept Kenya following the 2007 elections.

Fears of a return to similar ethnic tensions and worries over terrorism have triggered growing concerns over the safety of the world’s favourite safari destination.

Although tourists were not the targets of the attacks in Mpeketoni on Sunday and Monday nights, al-Shabaab, the regional affiliate of al-Qaeda, warned that “Kenya is officially a war zoneâ€.

Hotels on the country’s beaches were already struggling following new travel advice from Britain and others. Safari guides also now worry that the recent terror attacks could cause a ripple inland and keep tourists away.
“I’d already had half of my clients for this year cancel,†said Isaac Rotich, one of Kenya’s leading private safari guides.
“All of us are worried. It’s very difficult to reassure people. We are vulnerable and we need to see much better security measures in place not just at malls in Nairobi, but all over the country, including in the national parks.â€

Tourism drives more than 10 per cent of the economy, and supports more than half a million jobs.
However, senior tourism industry figures have tried to reassure tourists that national parks and wilderness areas are far off the Islamists’ radar.

No successful terror attack has specifically targeted tourists since 2002, when al-Qaeda sent a suicide bomber into a hotel north of Mombasa popular with Israelis, and simultaneously tried and failed to down a holiday jet bound for Tel Aviv.

But the Westgate Shopping Centre siege in the capital, Nairobi, last September appeared designed to include foreigners among its victims.
An improvised bomb left in a hotel near Mombasa in May failed to explode as planned but suggested terrorists once again planned to strike hotels.

“We only need one more of those to succeed, and we’re off the map for half a decade or more,†one hotelier in Lamu said privately.
Axel Lohwasser owns Kilima Camp in the Masai Mara, part of a small group of Kenyan boutique lodges in national parks, Nairobi and at Msambweni on the coast.
“People are calling and asking, ’Is it really safe’,†he said. “Nowhere can be completely safe, but really everything is being done to ensure there is no risk in the safari areas.
“Kenya has had problems before, the visitors come back. This time, unless there is some other Westgate, or a bomb in a tourist hotel, it will be just the same.â€

The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) pointed out that the two attacks this week took place in areas with “no international tourist facilities†and said that nearby Lamu was “in no way affectedâ€.

“Tourism activity continues as normal throughout the country with holidaymakers visiting the country’s safari circuits and popular coastal resorts of Diani, Malindi, Watamu, Kilifi and Lamu,†the KTB said in a statement.

Kenya’s government is aggressively selling the country as a holiday destination to new markets in Asia, which will help cushion losses from Britain, Europe and the US.
The number of Britons visiting Kenya fell from a peak of 203,290 in 2011 to 149,699 last year, the KTB said.
Between 2009 and 2012, the number of visitors from China more than doubled from 20,339 to 41,303, although the figure dipped slightly in 2013.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...m-claims-president-as-tourism-fears-grow.html
 
Last edited:

saward

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#7
Ongoing.

24 June 2014 Last updated at 08:15

.'Five killed' in new Kenya coast attack Breaking news
At least five people have been killed in attack on the Kenyan coast, close to the scene of raids last week in which more than 60 people died.

Officials said an armed gang descended on the village of Witu, about 15km (9 miles) from the town of Mpeketoni.

No group has claimed of responsibility.

Somali Islamist group al-Shabab said it carried out last week's attacks in Mpeketoni, near Lamu. Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta, however, blamed local political groups.

Lamu County Commissioner Stephen Ikua confirmed on Tuesday there had been a new "unfortunate attack" overnight.

Al-Shabab said previous raids were in response to the presence of Kenyan troops in Somalia.

Kenyan fighter jet launched renewed air strikes on the group's bases in Somalia in recent days, officials say.

BBC News - 'Five killed' in new Kenya coast attack
 

tapmaster

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#8
The biggest problem that the world faces is Islamic Terrorism. I'm sure that is going to upset a few people. But, it's calling it as I see it. Even in Egypt they have said that they can not protect the tourist who go to Egypt. So at the end of the day they are shooting themselves in the foot. As it is tourist dollars that are bringing funds to these countries.

Here in Britain, USA and many other countries have to prepare for the lone wolf or the one attacker. Why would we expect these people to change after they have left the war zone? The problem is that we have to be more diligent in investigating how all of a sudden a passport goes missing.

I was going to the USA last year to visit my family and people told me to shave my beard off before I went to the USA. I'm a Christian and don't see where the beard has any significance. As when the 9/11 attack happened all of those people were clean shaved. We have to recognize that face which has recently been shaved or the injuries and diseases that they bring back to the UK.

We know now from last weeks news papers that the government has been spying on peoples email and internet accounts. We already knew that. As every pc has an IP address or Internet Protocol. So they know what is going on. Even with monitoring tablets and other devices. I remember back in the early days of the internet there was Echelon Watch then later came along Carnivore. They have been reviewing our mail and internet for years. You can't escape. Ass they can by remote listen to your call and when you hang up can use your camera on your phone and also listen to your phone calls and know exactly where you are from. This is from a Crackberry or other smart phone.

People were led to believe that if you have nothing to hide they can give away their rights. It means nothing to most people know but some day it will. In the Oscar Pistorius trial they did not find here mobile but they had all the text messages that he had sent. This is one of the reasons people need to know their rights. Or what is left of their rights as in USA they know every move you make.

We as the citizens of the country have to support the police in their efforts to find the true terrorists out there.

I was a passenger in a vehicle the other day and the man infront of us was sending a text message. The people behind started blowing their horns. The man moved over and motioned for us to pull along side him. He said "go back home to your country and leave the UK" I had another guy on a bicycle who was going through the zebra crossing without stopping called me "a twar" then he slowed down enough to say "go back to your own country". I'm not your average immigrant. I own two properties, pay council tax, pay road taxes, insurance etc. So if all of us foreigners left Britain would it make it better for this country.

We have to be careful what we wish for. Let's crack down on terrorists when they return to UK. especially those in the video. They should get a meeting with a drone asap with a missile being launched at them.

tapmaster
 

saward

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#9
Continued unrest.

5 July 2014 Last updated at 23:53

Gunfire reported in Kenya's Lamu district.

Shooting has been reported in Kenya's coastal district of Lamu, the scene of several attacks claimed by Islamic militants this year.
The BBC's Dennis Okari in Nairobi says houses have been set alight in Hindi, near Mpeketoni, and a police station has been attacked at Gamba.
The Kenya National Disaster Operation Centre said on Twitter that police were responding to the incidents.

Mpeketoni was nearly destroyed in one of the attacks last month.
It is not clear who is responsible for the shooting, but the Somali militant Islamist group al-Shabab has mounted a number of attacks in the region.

The Kenyan Red Cross said it had sent emergency teams to the area but it had no reports of casualties so far.

Attacks in the Lamu area early last month killed at least 60 people, as gunmen descended on hotels and a police station.
Five people died in a later attack by an armed gang on the village of Witu, about 15km (9 miles) from Mpeketoni.

The following day authorities said they had arrested 13 alleged separatists accused of planning more attacks on the coast.
The area includes Lamu island, a well-known tourist resort, however, the attacks happened on the mainland, in Lamu County.

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta has blamed the attacks on political networks, despite al-Shabab claiming responsibility.
Opposition parties have dismissed the president's claims.

BBC News - Gunfire reported in Kenya's Lamu district
 
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