April 28th 2017

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Security laxity blamed as Shabaab kills 12 in Mandera

Due to its proximity to Somalia, Mandera is a hotbed of Al Shabaab militants, accounting for more than half of the group’s attacks since 2011, even though the group’s most deadly attacks have been on Nairobi and Garissa targets.

By Free Press Correspondentnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.comTuesday, 25 Oct 2016 10:00 EAT

Security officials in Mandera County have confirmed the killing of 12 people in a dawn attack today by suspected Al Shabaab militants. Heavily armed militants are reported to have attacked the Bishaaro Hotel in the town where at least ten guests from Nairobi had lodged on Monday night.

Most occupants of the hotel’s rooms were non-locals, among whom were a group of thespians who had arrived in Mandera yesterday to perform stage drama for form four candidates due to sit their papers. A number of local schools would attend the performances which were to be based on texts for the Literature in English examinations.

Ten people were rescued from the scene, some of whom were badly wounded, according to Mandera county commander Job Boronjo said.

Due to its proximity to Somalia, Mandera is a hotbed of Al Shabaab militants, accounting for more than half of the group’s attacks since 2011, even though the group’s most deadly attacks have been on Nairobi and Garissa targets.

While the security forces are stretched due to high demands, laxity has been blamed for recent events. Early this month, Al Shabaab militants killed six people at an estate in Bulla where non-locals stayed. The attackers broke into estate and shot randomly at their victims.

The Bishaaro Hotel attacked that was the scene of this morning’s attack had at least 30 non-locals, including the thespians whose travel there had been highly publicized in the area, but no effective security measures were taken to guard them.

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