Five Kenyan soldiers killed in roadside blast

The Shabab has been fighting to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Mogadishu for over a decade. (AFP)
Updated 10 August 2018
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Five Kenyan soldiers killed in roadside blast

  • The Shabab has been fighting to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Mogadishu for over a decade
  • The attack, which the police blame on Al-Qaeda aligned Somali Shabab militants

NAIROBI: Five Kenyan soldiers were killed Wednesday when their vehicle was blown up by an improvised explosive device in the eastern Lamu county, police sources said.
“The officers were on a light truck that ran over the IED and was badly destroyed and the officers died on the spot. Six others have been injured,” a senior police officer in Lamu told AFP on condition of anonymity.
Another police officer in Lamu confirmed the deaths but did not give any further information: “Yes it is true five soldiers were killed and six injured.”
The attack, which the police blame on Al-Qaeda aligned Somali Shabab militants, took place on the road to the town of Bodhei near the Boni Forest, which the Islamists use as a refuge.
The use of homemade explosives against police and army patrols in the border areas of northern and eastern Kenya near Somalia is relatively common.
The Shabab claimed to have killed 11 soldiers in Lamu County as well as a Somali soldier in Lower Shabelle, the SITE Intelligence Group, monitoring the Shahada News Agency, said in an email.
The organization has claimed several such attacks in the past, in which dozens of Kenyan policemen and soldiers have died.
The Shabab has been fighting to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Mogadishu for over a decade.
They were expelled from the Somali capital in 2011 and lost most of their strongholds, but they still control large rural areas from where they carry out guerrilla operations and suicide bombings, including in Mogadishu.
Wednesday’s blast came a day after the 20th anniversary of the attacks against the US embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam in 1998, which killed 224 people and marked the emergence of Al-Qaeda on the international stage.


Sri Lanka troops launch major hunt for militants linked to suicide attacks

Updated 3 min 24 sec ago
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Sri Lanka troops launch major hunt for militants linked to suicide attacks

  • Several Colombo suburbs were targeted by troops using emergency powers on arrests and detentions adopted after the April 21 attacks
  • Security forces have arrested scores of suspects in connection with the bombings and over what appeared to be organized violence against the island’s Muslim minority

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s military launched a major hunt Saturday for remnants of an militant group which carried out the Easter suicide bombings that killed 258 people, officials said.
Several Colombo suburbs were targeted by troops using emergency powers on arrests and detentions adopted after the April 21 attacks.
“Special cordon-and-search operations are under way in three areas just outside Colombo,” a military official told reporters.
Similar operations were also carried out in the country’s north-west, where anti-Muslim riots this month left one man dead and hundreds of Muslim-owned shops, homes and mosques destroyed.
Security forces have arrested scores of suspects in connection with the bombings and over what appeared to be organized violence against the island’s Muslim minority.
While authorities say the immediate militant threat has been blunted, President Maithripala Sirisena on Wednesday extended for one month the 30-day state of emergency imposed after the suicide bombings.
Sirisena said the move was to maintain “public security,” with the country still on edge after the attacks on three hotels and three churches that were blamed on a local militant group, the National Thowheeth Jama’ath (NTJ).
The Daesh group has also claimed a role in the attacks.
Christians make up 7.6 percent and Muslims 10 percent of mainly Buddhist Sri Lanka.