Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta announced on Wednesday that the siege by al-Shabab extremists at an upmarket hotel complex in Nairobi is over and that the attackers have been “eliminated”.
In a televised address, Kenyatta told the nation that about 700 civilians were evacuated from the DusitD2 hotel compound during the terror attack which started on Tuesday afternoon and lasted 20 hours, and that 14 fatalities were confirmed.
Police had previously reported 15 dead.
“I can confirm that… the security operation at Dusit complex is over and all the terrorists eliminated.
“As of this moment, we have confirmation that 14 innocent lives were lost to the… terrorists, with others injured.”
Somali armed group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the attack at the complex which is made up of a 101-roomed hotel, restaurant, spa and office building. The attack began with two explosions — a suicide bomber in the hotel foyer and three cars exploding in the parking lot. The explosions were accompanied by several gunfights between security and gunmen.
Kenyan police chief Joseph Boinnet told AFP that five attackers were killed.
“There were five terrorists and all of them are no more. It is a clearing exercise now going on there.”
Al-Shabab has repeatedly targeted Kenya since the country sent its army into Somalia in 2011 to fight the extremist group.
In 2013, the group killed 67 people when gunmen stormed the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi. Al-Shabab further killed another 148 people in 2015 at the Garissa University College in eastern Kenya.