Militants raid Kenyan police camp in Mandera
Thursday February 02 2017
Suspected Al-Shabaab militants have attacked a police camp in Kenya's northeast border county of Mandera.
Over 20 gunmen are said to have raided the Administration Police camp in Arabia at 1.25am (2225 GMT) on Thursday.
Some 10 officers are believed to have been in the camp when the attack occured but Lafey Deputy County Commissioner Eric Oronyi said he could not give the exact number.
“We have lost no officer but one student was hit by a stray bullet during the incident from their family house,” he said.
Speaking to the Nation on phone, Mr Oronyi said the attackers made away with a police Toyota Land Cruiser, a motorcycle, three rifles, bullets and four voter registration kits belonging to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.
“The police officers took cover and the attackers made away with their personal belongings, including clothes and other things the officers left behind,” he said, adding that the militants also set alight mattresses.
Two of the guns were assigned to National Police Reservists while one belonged to an administration police officer.
Communication cut off
“Preliminary information shows they destroyed a Safaricom mast before attacking the AP camp,” Mr Oronyi said.
The gunmen vandalised the telecom mast in Khoror Farar cutting off mobile communication in the area.
Reinforcement from Kenya Defence Forces in Mandera was dispatched on Thursday morning.
The injured student is admitted to Mandera County Referral Hospital in critical condition after a bullet went through his head.
The county chief said the situation was still being assessed by security agents on the ground.
“We have a contingent of police on the ground together with the military and we shall be getting more information once they reach to an area with mobile network,” he said.
The attack came days after Kenya's Inspector-General of Police Joseph Boinnet together with his key lieutenants visited officers in camps in the area.
It also happened barely a week after Al-Shabaab killed nine Kenyan soldiers in camp in Kulbiyow, Lower Jubba, Somalia, about 18 kilometres from the Kenyan border.
The numbers of the soldiers killed in the attack is, however, disputed, with Al-Shabaab putting it at over 60.
On the dawn of January 15, 2016, Kenya also lost over 100 troops when Al-Shabaab overran a KDF camp in El-Adde, Somalia.
Kenyan soldiers are fighting the rag-tag militia under the UN-backed African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) that has lost hundreds of soldiers in camp attacks.
Amisom is a 22,000-strong force comprising soldiers from Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda.