9 killed in suspected terror attack in Lamu


Lamu,KENYA:Nine people have been killed  in a massacre style used  by suspected Alshabaab militants in Jima and Poromoko villages Friday night.

Police sources said a group of about 15 heavily armed suspected Alshabaab militants of Somali origin raided Jima and Poromoko villages mostly inhabited by non-locals at around 11pm Friday night where they herded the men specifically from the Kamba and Kikuyu communities.

The nine men were then slaughtered using knives.

Police sources also indicate that the number of casualties could be higher since there was a high possibility that some bodies have not yet been recovered and could be scattered in the bushes.

“They raided Jima and Pandanguo villages and killed nine men.They were slaughtered like chicken using knives.Something similar to what happened in Mpeketoni in 2014.We suspect there are many bodies that haven’t been recovered,”said the source.

Then militants are said to have ransacked farms at Jima area looking for non-muslims but didn’t find any since the farmers had long vacated their farms and fled to Jima trading centre,Poromoko and Pandanguo areas since the terror attack in Pandanguo on Wednesday.

A witness and survivor who identified himself as Kaingu Kadzomba said the militants were only targeting male non-muslims.

“They said they were just fighting for their land and that we should let them be.They even asked Boni farmers to give them green maize but were told it wasn’t ripe yet.They also asked if there were police at Jima centre to give them security,”he said.

He said the militants descended on houses at Jima,flushed out non-local males and slaughtered them with knives.

While confirming the recent attack,Linda Boni Operations Director James Seriani said four people had been killed and that police officers had already been deployed to the ground.

“There was an attack there last night. We are now heading there. Four deaths reported. Forces are being mobilized from all areas to pursue the attackers,” said Seriani.

Lamu County Commissioner Joseph Kanyiri also confirmed that there had been an attack but said he didn’t have clear information of the number of casualties.

“There was an attack in the night.Numbers not known,” said Kanyiri in a text.

The killings come just hours after residents of Jima village reported having woken up to mysterious footprints across the village which they suspected to belong to the Alshabaab militants.

Jima village is about two kilometers from Pandanguo where suspected militants attacked a police station and killed three officers and injured one early Wednesday morning.

County security bosses continue to downplay reports filed by locals of suspicious people and happenings in the county as mere rumors and are mostly unwilling to comment.

Residents are now living in fear not knowing where the militants will strike next as more reports indicate that the militants are advancing towards Bargoni in Lamu east.