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Six people killed in suspected Al Shabaab attack in Kenya

Kenyan police check vehicles following an attack by gunmen in Lamu county, in the country's southeast, in January 2020. © AFP file photo

LAMU, KENYA: Six people have been killed and homes torched in an attack Monday by suspected Al Shabaab militants in Kenya’s coastal Lamu region that borders Somalia, a local government official said.

“I confirm that we had an attack suspected to be by Al Shabaab at a place known as Widhu, and we have lost six people. One was shot dead and we also have others who were burnt,” said Lamu County Commissioner Irungu Macharia.

“Our security forces are pursuing them, and we urge support from locals to help us because when we work together we succeed.”

Al Shabaab fighters have staged several large-scale attacks inside Kenya in retaliation for Nairobi sending troops into Somalia in 2011 as part of an African Union force to degrade the jihadists.

The al Qaeda-linked group is seeking to overthrow the internationally-backed government in Mogadishu, and controls swathes of southern Somalia from where it regularly launches attacks in the capital and elsewhere.

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The Lamu region, which includes popular tourist beach destination Lamu Island, lies close to the Somali frontier and has suffered frequent attacks, often carried out with roadside bombs.

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