Kenya Politics

Kenya Attack: Al Shabaab claims responsibility for Shooting and blasts in Nairobi hotel

Kenya Attack: Al Shabaab claims responsibility for Shooting and blasts in Nairobi hotel

Explosions and gunfire rocked an upscale hotel in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, on Tuesday in a terrorist attack that sent people fleeing into the streets and left body parts on the ground.

A spokesman for Somalia-based militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for what he said is “an on-going operation in Nairobi”.

The spokesman did not give details of the operation, but said al-Shabab will give further details once it is over.

The complex in Nairobi includes a large hotel known as DusitD2, banks and offices. Several vehicles are burning. People are being rushed and carried from the scene.

A Kenyan journalist at the scene of the attack reports that witnesses say armed men arrived at the hotel complex and entered Dusit hotel, in the Westland district of the city, before they started shooting.

Gunfire continued several minutes after the first reports. Black smoke rose from the scene with a number of cars also on fire.

Gunfire, an explosion, and a large blaze sent people scattering from the upscale hotel and nearby office complex, witnesses told Reuters. Footage on Citizen TV, a private broadcaster, showed smoke rising from the area and cars aflame.

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One man escaping the attack, said he was hiding inside until he could run away. He said there was lots of shooting inside the complex.

Four ambulances and a fire truck arrived at the scene as fleeing office workers told Reuters colleagues were still huddled under their desks

Police spokesman Charles Owino says that “we have sent officers to the scene, including from the anti-terrorism unit, but so far we have no more information.”

Mr Owino told Citizen Television it may be a militant attack

“We have to go for the highest incident that could take place. The highest incident we have is a terror (attack),” he said.

The attack immediately reminds many Kenyans of the Westgate Mall attack in Nairobi in 2013, when al-Shabab extremists burst into the luxury shopping centre, hurling grenades and starting a days-long siege that left 67 people dead.

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