Coercion Code - "Dark Times are upon us"

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be men". – 1 Corinthians 14:20

Christianity, Islam, Kenya

Kenya University Deaths and Threats of More From Militants

The death toll in an assault by Somali militants on a Kenyan university is likely to climb above 147, a government source and media said on Friday, as anger grew among local residents over what they say as a government failure to prevent bloodshed.Strapped with explosives, masked al Shabaab gunmen stormed the Garissa University College campus, some 200 km (120 miles) from the Somali border, in a pre-dawn rampage on Thursday.

Tossing grenades and spraying bullets at cowering students, the attackers initially killed indiscriminately. But they later freed some Muslims and instead targeted Christian students during a siege that lasted about 15 hours.

Anger over the massacre was compounded by the fact there were warnings last week that an attack on a university was imminent. Local residents accused the authorities of doing little to boost security in this little-developed region.

“It’s because of laxity by the government that these things are happening. For something like this to happen when there are those rumors is unacceptable,” said Mohamed Salat, 47, a Somali Kenyan businessman.

Officials said almost 150 people died, with at least 79 wounded, many critically. But with an uncertain number of students and staff still missing, the casualties may yet mount.

“Yes, there is a likelihood of numbers going up,” said one government source dealing with the Garissa attack.

Kenya’s biggest-selling Daily Nation newspaper, citing sources, said the death toll would be significantly higher.

Outside the university gates, a throng of veiled women clung to the hope that missing people would still turn up alive.

Barey Bare, 36, looking for her cousin who worked as a clerk at the university and has been missing since Thursday, said: “We are here waiting for news if we can find him, dead or alive.”

The violence will heap further pressure on President Uhur Kenyatta, who has struggled to stop frequent militant gun and grenade attacks that have dented Kenya’s image abroad and brought the country’s vital tourism industry to its knees.

On Friday, U.S. President Barack Obama called Kenyatta to express condolences over the “heinous terrorist attack” and confirmed he still planned to visit the country later this year, the White House said.

More than 400 people have been killed by al Qaeda-allied al Shabaab in the east African nation since Kenyatta took office in April 2013, including some 67 people who died in a blitz on a shopping mall in the capital Nairobi in September of that year.

Al Qaeda itself killed some 207 people when it blew up the U.S. embassy in Nairobi in 1998, an attack which remains the single biggest loss of life in Kenya since its independence from Britain in 1963.

Al Shabaab says its recent wave of attacks are retribution for Kenya sending troops into Somalia to fight the group alongside other African Union peacekeepers.

The group, which at one point controlled most of Somalia, has lost swathes of territory in recent years but diplomats have repeatedly warned this has not diminished al Shabaab’s ability to stage guerrilla-style attacks at home and abroad.

“MOST WANTED” BOUNTY

Survivors of the Garissa attack spoke of merciless executions by the attackers, who stalked classrooms and dormitories hunting for non-Muslim students.

Reuben Mwavita, 21, a student, said he saw three female students kneeling in front of the gunmen, begging for mercy.

“The mistake they made was to say ‘Jesus, please save us’, because that is when they were immediately shot,” Mwavita said.

Many students fled into the sandy scrubland, scaling barbed-wire fences and jumping off buildings, often half-naked, as they were awoken by the sound of gunfire and explosions.

“The attackers were just in the next room. I heard them ask people whether they were Christian or Muslim, then I heard gunshots and screams,” said Susan Kitoko, 24, who broke her hip when she jumped out of the first floor window of her dorm.

Within hours of the attack, Kenya put up a 20 million shillings ($215,000) reward for the arrest of Mohamed Mohamud, a former Garissa teacher labeled “Most Wanted” in a government poster and linked by Kenyan media to two separate al Shabaab attacks in the neighboring Mandera region last year.

The government also imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew on Garissa, Mandera and two other crime-ridden regions near the porous border with Somalia.

However, diplomats and analysts say the move effectively concedes the government cannot control those areas, widely seen as Kenya’s soft underbelly.

As such, al Shabaab is likely to continue its strategy of attacking “low risk and high reward” soft targets in marginalized parts of the country, according to Ahmed Salim, a senior associate at Teneo Intelligence.

Militant group threatens additional attacks on Kenya – 

Two days after al-Shabab militants slaughtered some 148 people in a devastating attack on a university in northeastern Kenya, the Islamic extremists issued a chilling threat that its terrorizing of Kenya was far from over.

“Kenyan cities will run red with blood,” al-Shabab said, according to the SITE intelligence monitoring group. “No amount of precaution or safety measures will be able to guarantee your safety, thwart another attack or prevent another bloodbath.”

President Uhuru Kenyatta was defiant when he addressed the nation in response to the attacks and al-Shabab’s statement. “We will fight terrorism to the end,” he said. “I guarantee that my administration shall respond in the fiercest way possible.” He declared three days of national mourning for the victims of the attack.

A Kenyan official said that five people suspected of involvement in the massacre have been arrested and that the government is pursuing other suspects, including Mohamed Mohamud. He is a former teacher at a Kenyan madrassa, or Islamic school, and the alleged mastermind of the attack.

One of the alleged al-Shabab gunmen has been identified as the son of a Kenyan official.

A chief in Mandera County reported his son missing last year, fearing he had gone to Somali. His worst fears were confirmed Sunday when his son, Abdirahim Mohammed Abdullahi, was identifed as one of those involved the attack. All four attackers were killed by Kenyan security forces.

Abdullahi was a University of Nairobi graduate who received a law degree in 2013.

“We will bring all of them to justice,” Kenyatta said. “We are also in active pursuit of the mastermind and have placed a reward for his capture,” he said of the $220,000 being offered for information leading to Moha­mud’s arrest.

Interior Ministry spokesman Mwenda Njoka said, in a Twitter post, that three people trying to cross into Somalia were arrested by Kenyan security forces. Two other suspects were arrested at the Garissa University College campus.

Thursday’s assault on the university is the worst terrorist attack in Kenya since the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi in 1998, which killed 224 people. An attack on the upscale Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi in September 2013 left 67 dead.

Saturday morning, a surviving Christian student was found at the university. She had been hiding in a wardrobe for two days since the attacks. Cynthia Cheroitich was taken to Garissa Hospital, where she told the Associated Press that she hid in the wardrobe, covering herself with clothing, when the attack started. She said she remained there as al-Shabab militants massacred her classmates.

She continued to hide as the militants were eventually killed by security forces and rescue workers evacuated surviving students. Even as volunteers began mopping the bloodied dormitories, she kept hiding. Cheroitich told the AP that when rescuers came, she thought they were militants and refused to emerge. It took one of her teachers to coax her out of her hiding place.

“I was just praying to my God,” Cheroitich said.The bodies of many of those killed in Garissa have been transported to the capital, Nairobi, and hundreds of surviving students were bused back to their homes Friday.Life in Garissa is slowly beginning to return to normal, but citizens are reeling from the attacks.

“What has happened is sad; it’s devastating,” said Hassan Sheikh Ali, the first principal of Garissa University College. “This is the only university in the entire pastoralist domain, and unfortunately the same university has been destroyed. All that we have been building, all the hopes we had, destroyed.”

Many Garissa residents channeled their emotions by turning out in the traffic-clogged streets Saturday to view the bodies of four men alleged to have taken part in the assault, even as Somali militants issued a statement threatening Kenya with more attacks.

Some wanted desperately to verify that the attackers weren’t their countrymen, others wanted to see if they recognized a face, and still others wanted to see that those capable of such brutal acts had experienced some vague form of justice.

“I want to see them,” Muna Haji said. “I want to know that these people are dead. They have killed innocent people.”

The four naked bodies were loaded haphazardly into the back of a pickup truck at the morgue where they had been held since morning. Local and international forensics teams had taken their clothes as evidence.

The truck paraded the bodies through town as residents ran alongside, clamoring for a glimpse, until it arrived at Garissa Primary School, where about 2,000 people had gathered. There, it parked, and the bodies sat. Flies gathered on the bloated limbs hanging from the truck bed as the crowd swelled.

“Are those the real terrorists? During Westgate, we never found out whether the terrorists were really killed,” said Abdihakim Mowlio, an intern at Garissa Provincial General Hospital, referring to the deadly Westgate mall attack. “If they show the dead bodies, we believe that they’ve really been killed. We’ll feel safer because we’ve seen that the government has actually responded.”

As it had with its previous assaults in Kenya, which have claimed the lives of more than 200 Kenyans in the past two years, al-Shabab said the attacks were in retaliation for Kenya’s 2011 invasion of Somalia and its continued presence in the country. The invasion — called Operation Linda Nchi — was allegedly in response to the kidnapping of Westerners in northeastern Kenya.

“Since October 2011, Kenya has been the most insecure that we have seen in decades. If going into Somalia was to secure Kenya, then they have failed,” said Abdullahi Halakhe, a Horn of Africa analyst with Amnesty International. “The elephant in the room is what is Kenya’s plan as far as Somalia is concerned? What does the exit plan look like? Is it two years, is it three years?”

What’s behind the return of al-Shabab, the terror group that killed at least 147 people in Kenya?

They knew who they were after in Kenya

Gunmen attack a college campus in Kenya

“I was just praying to my God,” Cheroitich said.

The bodies of many of those killed in Garissa have been transported to the capital, Nairobi, and hundreds of surviving students were bused back to their homes Friday.

Life in Garissa is slowly beginning to return to normal, but citizens are reeling from the attacks.

“What has happened is sad; it’s devastating,” said Hassan Sheikh Ali, the first principal of Garissa University College. “This is the only university in the entire pastoralist domain, and unfortunately the same university has been destroyed. All that we have been building, all the hopes we had, destroyed.”

Many Garissa residents channeled their emotions by turning out in the traffic-clogged streets Saturday to view the bodies of four men alleged to have taken part in the assault, even as Somali militants issued a statement threatening Kenya with more attacks.

Some wanted desperately to verify that the attackers weren’t their countrymen, others wanted to see if they recognized a face, and still others wanted to see that those capable of such brutal acts had experienced some vague form of justice.

“I want to see them,” Muna Haji said. “I want to know that these people are dead. They have killed innocent people.”

The four naked bodies were loaded haphazardly into the back of a pickup truck at the morgue where they had been held since morning. Local and international forensics teams had taken their clothes as evidence.

The truck paraded the bodies through town as residents ran alongside, clamoring for a glimpse, until it arrived at Garissa Primary School, where about 2,000 people had gathered. There, it parked, and the bodies sat. Flies gathered on the bloated limbs hanging from the truck bed as the crowd swelled.

“Are those the real terrorists? During Westgate, we never found out whether the terrorists were really killed,” said Abdihakim Mowlio, an intern at Garissa Provincial General Hospital, referring to the deadly Westgate mall attack. “If they show the dead bodies, we believe that they’ve really been killed. We’ll feel safer because we’ve seen that the government has actually responded.”

As it had with its previous assaults in Kenya, which have claimed the lives of more than 200 Kenyans in the past two years, al-Shabab said the attacks were in retaliation for Kenya’s 2011 invasion of Somalia and its continued presence in the country. The invasion — called Operation Linda Nchi — was allegedly in response to the kidnapping of Westerners in northeastern Kenya.

“Since October 2011, Kenya has been the most insecure that we have seen in decades. If going into Somalia was to secure Kenya, then they have failed,” said Abdullahi Halakhe, a Horn of Africa analyst with Amnesty International. “The elephant in the room is what is Kenya’s plan as far as Somalia is concerned? What does the exit plan look like? Is it two years, is it three years?”

What’s behind the return of al-Shabab, the terror group that killed at least 147 people in Kenya?

They knew who they were after in Kenya

Survivor from Kenya massacre emerges after two days in wardrobe – Yahoo News

  •  Survivor from Kenya massacre emerges after two days in wardrobe – Yahoo News
    • Kenyan students are evacuated from Moi University during a terrorist raid by Shebab fighters in Garissa, on April 3, 2015 (AFP Photo/Carl de Souza)

      Garissa (Kenya) (AFP) – A survivor of Kenya’s university massacre who hid in a wardrobe for two days too terrified to come out was rescued safely Saturday, dehydrated but apparently unharmed, Kenya Red Cross said.

      “A survivor has been discovered, she was hiding in a wardrobe,” Kenya Red Cross spokeswoman Arnolda Shiundu told AFP.

      “She has been taken to hospital and she’s currently undergoing assessment by doctors.”

      The 19-year old woman was initially too scared to come out until a university lecturer she knew came to convince her that the police officers were not the Shebab gunmen who carried out the killing of nearly 150 of her fellow students, police said.

      “She is the latest survivor, she has been hiding in a wardrobe for two days,” a police officer involved in the security operation said, who asked not to be name. “That is when she came out of the wardrobe and rushed to hospital.”

      The student, who was rescued on Saturday morning, some 50 hours after the attack began. The gunmen were killed on Thursday evening.

      The BBC said she told them she drank “body lotion when she felt hungry.”

      Kenyan troops searching the building were alarmed when they heard sounds coming from inside a wardrobe.

      “She kept asking for reassurance from the security forces they were not Al-Shebab before she could come out,” the police officer said.

      “She was given milk and rushed to the Garissa hospital, where she is being observed before being given counselling.”

      Four survivors were also found on Friday, Shiundu said


      Sources:

      http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/03/us-kenya-security-college-idUSKBN0MT0CK20150403

      A relative is assisted by Kenya Red Cross staff where bodies of the students killed in Thursday’s attack by gunmen, are preserved at the Chiromo Mortuary in the capital Nairobi April 4, 2015. Somali militants vowed on Saturday to wage a long war against Kenya and run its cities “red with blood” after the group’s fighters killed nearly 150 people during an assault on a Kenyan university. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

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