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SOMALIA ATTACKS KENYA KILLS CIVILIANS

Somali militia overrun village in Kenyan soil

By Adow Jubat and Boniface Ongeri

Two people are missing after suspected Somali gunmen overrun a village in North Eastern Province.

The Wednesday night incident in Dadajabula village, Wajir District, left seven people injured, five of them critically so.

The militiamen in two armoured vehicles engaged security personnel in a 30-minute fire exchange before they fled into Somalia.

PC James ole Seriani said the suspected Al-Shabaab militia ransacked the village 4km from the Kenya/Somali border and indiscriminately fired at the sleeping villagers during the half-hour siege.

He said the motive of the attack could not be immediately established, but there were claims of rivalry over the lucrative cross-border miraa trade between Somali traders and their Kenyan counterparts.

“We are investigating claims that the gunmen were targeting miraa traders. We are also investigating whether the militia was targeting the local police post, which was close to the raided homes,” he said.

The PC said contingents of security personnel including the military were dispatched from Wajir town to the volatile border to thwart further attempts of incursions.

The PC said it was unclear whether the two missing people were kidnapped or fled into the bushes during the attack.

Incursions in the border town have been a common feature since the Islamist group took control of Southern Somalia. In May, the militia raided Dadajabula Police Post and freed three people suspected to be their members who had earlier been arrested. They also abducted a police officer and made away with a police vehicle and guns.

In June 2007, two officers were kidnapped and later found murdered.

Wajir OCPD George Tonui said security had been mobilised to the area to ensure safety of the locals.

Al-Shabaab, which controls large parts of Somalia, has on several occasions threatened to attack Kenya for supporting the Transitional Federal Government in Mogadishu.

But Kenya has rubbished the threats, saying the gang is no match for her army.

A team of security officers is always patrolling the border, but its porous nature has made it difficult to prevent the incursions.

—Additional reporting by Cyrus Ombat

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About SG

Secretary general of Chama Cha Mwananchi. This blog www.chamachamwananchi.wordpress.com, is based in Sweden.

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