Somali militants: No Americans involved in Kenya siege

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al_shababAn Islamic extremist group on Tuesday denied reports that American citizens were among the Somali militants who stormed a Kenyan shopping mall Saturday, leaving at least 60 people dead, Reuters is reporting.

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Al-Shabab rejected comments by a Kenyan Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed that Americans and a Briton were among the attackers at Nairobi’s Westgate Shopping Mall.

“We have communicated with our mujahideen in Westgate and they told us fighting has just started,” al Shabaab’s media office told Reuters. “Those who describe the attackers as Americans and British are people who do not know what is going on in Westgate building.”

STORY: Seige continues

STORY: What we know

STORY: Somalis in U.S. condemn mall attack

Terrorists allied with al-Shabab said Tuesday they were “still holding their ground” and holding hostages in the mall. Kenyan authorities say very few if any hostages remain and that a “mop-up” operation was underway.

Al-Shabab has said the attack was revenge for Kenya’s participation in an Africa force that pushed the group out of the Somali capital of Mogadishu in 2011.

The Kenyan Red Cross say the assault that has killed 62 and wounded at least 175.

Mohamed said Monday on PBS’ NewsHour that “two or three Americans” and “one Brit” were among the militants in the mall. She said the Americans were 18 to 19 years old, of Somali or Arab origin and lived “in Minnesota and one other place” in the United States.

U.S. officials said were unable to confirm whether U.S. citizens were involved. A federal law enforcement official, who was not authorized to comment publicly, said investigators needed more information about the attackers to make a determination.

 

Contributing: Kevin Johnson

Babatunde Akinsola
Babatunde Akinsolahttps://naija247news.com
Babatunde Akinsola is aNaija247news' Southwest editor. He's based in Lagos and writes on the Yoruba Nation political issues, news and investigative reports

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