Some Got Warning To Avoid Westgate Before Bloody Siege
NIS officials told family members not to visit shopping mall
Kenya’s National Intelligence Agency (NIS) warned some people not to visit the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi before the bloody siege, a warning that was not received by the 67 victims who lost their lives during the attack.
Buried at the end of a London Independent report about the incident is the revelation that NIS, “did warn the police and officials inside the President’s office before the Westgate siege, but its warnings went unheeded.”
Individual officials with NIS also told their family members to avoid the Westgate mall on Saturday because it would be the target of an attack. A pregnant policewoman was warned by her brother, an NIS officer, not to visit Westgate.
“She has told police that her brother who is a NIS officer warned her not to visit Westgate that Saturday because she would not be able to run,” a senior officer said.
Evidence of prior knowledge that went unheeded is just one of the many questions that are still circulating in the aftermath of the horrific attack, details about which are only becoming more gruesome.
Doctors who have had the chance to examine victims say that their injuries are consistent with rape and brutal torture, including eyeballs being gouged out and fingers and parts of noses ripped off using pliers.
Read the full article at: rinf.com
READ: Terrorists Behind Mall Siege Threaten Bigger Attacks
Kenya official says military caused collapse of Westgate mall floors
Top-ranking official’s comments raise possibility that military may have killed hostages in their rescue attempt
Kenya’s military caused the collapse of three floors of Nairobi’s Westgate mall during the terrorist siege in which at least 67 people died, a top-ranking government official has said.
The account comes before the release of findings from an ongoing forensic investigation into the attack and raises the possibility that the military may have killed hostages in their rescue attempt. An undisclosed number of people are reportedly buried in the rubble.
The official said autopsies will determine if any bodies found there were killed by falling debris or the attackers.
US ambassador Robert F Godec said the United States is concerned about the spectre of more violence from the Somali Islamic group, al-Shabaab, which claimed responsibility for the attack.
"Obviously they do pose a threat and it’s critically important, I think, that we understand what the terrorists in that organisation are up to, how they carry out attacks and really seek to frankly end the threat that the organisation poses," Godec said. "We are working very hard with Kenya, and other countries, to do so."
FBI agents – along with investigators from Britain, Canada and Germany – have been dispatched to investigate the crime scene. Many of the dead were foreigners.
The Kenyan official also confirmed that Kenyan troops fired rocket-propelled grenades inside the mall, but would not say what was used to cause the collapse or whether it was intentional. The account at least partially backs up information from another official on Wednesday, who said rocket-propelled grenades fired by soldiers created a gaping hole in the mall’s roof and caused the floors to collapse.
Inside the mall on Friday, a pushchair was overturned on the marble floor next to wilting fresh flowers at a florist shop. Slabs of concrete sat on top of flattened cars in the parking area while in other parts there are rows of scorched vehicles.
Four huge explosions rocked the mall on Monday. The government has not publicly explained what caused the floors to collapse. One official earlier suggested it was caused by a mattress fire inside the Nakumatt department store.
Read the full article at: theguardian.com