5 police officers killed by suspected Al-Shabaab militants in northeast Kenya
Five Kenyan police officers were killed early Friday after suspected Al-Shabaab militants attacked two camps in Mandera County, northeast Kenya.
Northeastern Regional Commissioner Mohamud Saleh confirmed to Xinhua by phone that the two attacks targeted administration police and Kenya police camps in Lafey town.
Saleh said the dead included four administration police officers and a national police reservist.
He said the terrorists are suspected to have crossed the border from neighboring Somalia, destroyed a telecommunication mast in the area to cut off communication and later stormed the two police camps.
According to security sources, the heavily armed militia numbered about 100. Three other police officers were injured in the confrontation.
Lafey Deputy County Commissioner Erick Oronyi said the injured are receiving treatment at a local health facility and awaiting to be airlifted to capital Nairobi for specialized treatment.
He said the incident happened five km away from the border with Somali and the militants crossed on foot through the porous border.
The area has faced a series of attacks in the past two months that saw many communication masts destroyed. This is the third time Somali extremists attacked a security installation in Lafey region.
Attacks believed to be carried out by Al-Shabaab have occurred in Mandera, Wajir and Garissa counties of eastern Kenya since Kenyan soldiers crossed into Somalia in 2011. The attacks have occured despite efforts by the Kenyan military to flush out the extremist group by capturing their military bases and killing scores of them.