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At least eight people have been killed after two car bombs have exploded outside Jazeera hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu.
The blasts were at the Jazeera hotel close to Mogadishu’s airport, which is popular with Somali politicians.
Reports say the blasts were followed by exchanges of fire between security forces and the attackers.
The Somali Islamist militant group al-Shabab, who was driven out of Mogadishu in 2011, have said they carried out the attack.
At least eight people have been killed after two car bombs have exploded outside Jazeera hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu
The al-Qaeda-linked group still controls many southern and central areas of the country and has continued to launch attacks on the capital.
Four members of the security services were among the dead, including one senior officer, the deputy interior minister said.
Police officer Mohamed Warsame told the AFP agency that the second bomb went off as security services were trying to help the victims of the first blast.
The Jazeera hotel was also targeted in December 2012, when President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was staying there. At least seven people die in that attack.
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Two soldiers have been sacked and jailed for looting during last month’s attack on Nairobi’s Westgate shopping centre, Kenyan army chief Julius Karangi has said.
Julius Karangi said that a third soldier was under investigation.
He has previously said that soldiers had only taken water during the four-day siege, despite CCTV footage seeming to show them helping themselves to goods in a supermarket.
Somali Islamist group al-Shabab says it was behind the attack, which killed 67.
Two soldiers have been sacked and jailed for looting during last month’s attack on Nairobi’s Westgate shopping centre
At the same news conference, Police Criminal Investigation Department head Ndegwa Muhoro said that a phone call had been made to Norway during the siege.
One of the suspected attackers has been named as 23-year-old Somalia-born Norwegian national, Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow.
The Kenyan army has said that all four of the attackers died.
Ndegwa Muhoro said that Interpol was helping to analyse the bodies to confirm their identities, reports the AFP news agency.
Officials had initially said there were 10-15 attackers.
Ndegwa Muhoro said that five other people were in detention over the attack and would be charged soon.
Several shop-owners have said that their premises were looted during the siege.
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Nairobi shopping center’s security camera footage shows what appear to be Kenyan security forces looting goods during last month’s siege of the Westgate mall.
In the footage, some soldiers can be seen carrying white shopping bags, while others appear to take white boxes from a mobile phone store.
At least 67 people died when suspected al-Shabab militants stormed the Nairobi shopping centre on September 21.
The Kenyan military says it is investigating the looting allegations.
News agencies say the CCTV footage is taken inside the entrance to the Westgate mall’s Nakumatt supermarket, which sells everything from food to televisions.
In one section of footage, several soldiers are seen walking out of the supermarket, past a blood-spattered floor, carrying plastic carrier bags.
In another clip, Kenyan soldiers can be seen next to a mobile phone outlet.
Nairobi shopping center’s security camera footage shows what appear to be Kenyan security forces looting goods during last month’s siege of the Westgate mall
One reaches over the counter, and apparently removes a white item.
Then more soldiers remove white items, which the Reuters news agency describes as mobile phone boxes.
The Westgate attack sparked a four-day siege in which large parts of the shopping centre were destroyed.
The Kenyan military says it has launched an investigation into the looting allegations, which correspondents say will have angered many Kenyans.
At the weekend, Kenya’s biggest-selling newspaper, The Nation, ran an article entitled Shame of soldiers looting Westgate.
The footage of the alleged looting emerged as the Kenyan authorities announced they had recovered the body of what they consider to be a fourth attacker.
“Today, Sunday 20 October 2013, we recovered a fourth body, which we know from CCTV footage to be that of a terrorist,” said the Kenyan interior minister, Joseph Ole Lenku.
“DNA and other investigations will confirm their identities. We have also recovered four AK47 assault rifles which we know were used by the terrorists in the assault. We also recovered 11 magazines of AK47 assault rifles.”
Officials had initially said 10 to 15 gunmen were involved, but CCTV footage appears to show only four militants.
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Kenyan authorities have recovered two charred bodies from Nairobi’s Westgate shopping centre on Thursday.
The two bodies are “highly likely” to be two of the attackers, an official said.
Ndung’u Gethenji, chairman of the committee investigating the attack, said AK47 rifles used by the militants were found next to the bodies.
The authorities will now conduct forensic tests on the bodies.
At least 67 people died when suspected al-Shabab militants stormed the Nairobi shopping centre on 21 September.
The attack sparked a four-day siege in which large parts of the shopping centre were destroyed.
Two charred bodies have been recovered from Nairobi’s Westgate shopping centre
The Kenyan authorities have released the names, or nicknames, of four suspects in the attack, but have given few other details.
Ndung’u Gethenji said the bodies recovered on Thursday were likely to be militants because the army does not use AK47s.
He said another body recovered from the rubble was likely to be a soldier.
It is still not clear whether some of the attackers might have escaped, or even how many attackers there were.
Officials initially said 10 to 15 gunmen were involved, but CCTV footage appears to show only four militants.
The Somali militant group al-Shabab said its members carried out the attack in response to Kenya’s army carrying out operations on Somali territory.
There are about 4,000 Kenyan troops in the south of Somalia, where they have been fighting the militants since 2011.
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Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow has been identified as the Norwegian suspect in Kenya’s Westgate shopping centre attack, the BBC revealed.
Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow, 23, is a Norwegian citizen of Somali origin and he is suspected of helping to plan and carry out the attack.
At least 67 people died in the attack in Nairobi, which the al-Qaeda linked group al-Shabab says it carried out.
Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow has been identified as the Norwegian suspect in Kenya’s Westgate shopping centre attack
Last week Norway’s intelligence agency, the PST, said it had sent officers to Kenya to verify reports that a Norwegian citizen had been involved in the assault on the shopping centre, which began on Saturday September 21 and lasted four days.
It is unclear how many militants were involved. Police had initially estimated that there were 10-15 attackers inside the complex, but the CCTV footage which has so far been released by the Kenyan authorities shows just four men.
Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow is believed to be one of those four.
Forensic investigators are still combing through the rubble of Westgate – no bodies have yet been identified and it is not known whether the attackers are alive or dead.
Hassan Abdi Dhuhulow was born in Somalia, but he and his family moved to Norway as refugees in 1999.
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Norway’s intelligence agency PST is investigating whether a Norwegian citizen was involved in the attack on Nairobi’s Westgate mall.
The PST said it had sent investigators to Kenya to try to verify the claim.
It said it was opening an inquiry “based on information that a Norwegian citizen may have been involved”.
A Norwegian of Somali origin may have been involved in planning and carrying out the September 21 attack in which at least 67 people died, the PST said.
“The enquiry will primarily be aimed at helping prevent new terrorist acts and [determining] to what degree the Norwegian… was involved in the attack,” the agency said.
Norway’s intelligence agency PST is investigating whether a Norwegian citizen was involved in the attack on Nairobi’s Westgate mall
The PST added that it would also try to establish if the unnamed suspect had ties to Somalia’s al-Shabab, the al-Qaeda-linked militant group which said it had carried out the attack.
It said it was working to assess any potential threats to Norway and Norwegian interests.
Reports have suggested that an al-Shabab leader targeted at the weekend in a US military operation may have spent time in Norway.
The October 5 raid failed to capture Abdukadir Mohamed Abdukadir, alias Ikrima. He is thought to be a Kenyan citizen of Somali origin, one of many Kenyan Somalis and other foreign fighters who have joined the group.
Norway’s TV2 reported earlier this week that Ikrima had travelled to Norway and applied for asylum in 2004 but left in 2008 before there was a decision on his application.
Norwegian officials have not commented on the claims.
Last week Kenya’s military identified four men it said were involved in the Westgate siege. It said Abu Baara al-Sudani, Omar Nabhan, Khattab al-Kene and Umayr were killed during the standoff.
Abu Baara al-Sudani was said to have been an “experienced fighter” from Sudan, who led the group. Nabhan was a Kenyan of Arab origin and Kene a Somali linked to al-Shabab. Details about Umayr were not available.
American officials say US Navy SEALs have carried out two separate raids in Libya and Somalia targeting senior Islamist militants.
In Libya, US commandos captured an al-Qaeda leader accused of the 1998 bombings of the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
Anas al-Liby was seized in the capital Tripoli.
A leader of the al-Shabab group was targeted in southern Somalia, but that raid appears to have failed.
The al-Shabab leader – who has not been identified – is suspected of involvement in last month’s attack in the Westgate shopping centre in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, which left at least 67 people dead.
Al-Shabab has said it carried out the attack on September 21.
Anas al-Liby’s relatives and US officials said he had been seized in the Libyan capital early on Saturday.
He was parking outside his house when three vehicles encircled him, his car’s window was smashed and his gun was seized before he was taken away, his brother Nabih was quoted as saying by AP.
He added that his brother’s wife also saw the attack, describing the abductors as foreign-looking “commandos”.
US Navy SEALs have carried out two separate raids in Libya and Somalia targeting senior Islamist militants
The raid was conducted with the knowledge of the Libyan government, a US official was quoted as saying by CNN.
Anas al-Liby “is currently lawfully detained by the US military in a secure location outside of Libya”, Pentagon spokesman George Little said.
The 49-year-old is believed to have been one of the masterminds behind the 1998 US embassy attacks, which killed more than 220 people in Kenya and Tanzania.
He has been indicted in a New York court in connection with the attacks.
Anas al-Liby – whose real name is Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai – has been on the FBI’s most wanted list for more than a decade with a $5 million bounty on his head.
Al-Qaeda’s leadership has been consistently targeted since the killing of Osama Bin Laden by US special forces in 2011 in Pakistan.
The US defense department has also confirmed that special forces carried out a seaborne operation in Somalia’s coastal town of Barawe on Saturday.
George Little said the forces “were involved in a counter-terrorism operation against a known al-Shabab terrorist”. He declined to provide any further details.
Initial reports in the US media quoted unnamed US officials as saying that the suspect had been captured or killed by US Navy SEALs in the pre-dawn raid on a villa.
However, the officials later said that the SEALs failed to find the intended target, who was not identified.
The raid was carried out by members of Seal Team Six – the same unit that killed bin Laden, a US military official told AP.
The official added that in Barawe the commandos had decided to abort the mission after encountering fierce resistance from al-Shabab fighters.
“The Barawe raid was planned a week and a half ago,” a US security official told the New York Times.
“It was prompted by the Westgate attack,” added the official, who was speaking on the condition of anonymity.
Kenya military named four men believed to have been involved in the deadly shopping centre attack in Nairobi last month.
Al-Shabab militants Abu Baara al-Sudani, Omar Nabhan, Khattab al-Kene and Umayr – shown in new CCTV footage – were killed during the standoff.
Kenya said previously 10-15 militants had been involved, but the police chief says the figure may now be four to six.
The al-Shabab group said it carried out the attack on the Westgate mall on September 21, leaving at least 67 dead.
The al-Qaeda-linked group said the attack was in retaliation for Kenya’s military involvement in Somalia.
The naming of the men came as CCTV footage was aired showing four attackers calmly walking through a room in the mall holding machine guns.
Kenya Defense Forces spokesman Major Emmanuel Chirchir told Reuters news agency: “I confirm these were the terrorists; they all died in the raid.”
The naming of the Nairobi mall attack suspects came as CCTV footage was aired showing four attackers calmly walking through a room in the mall holding machine guns
Reuters quoted Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir as saying that al-Sudani was an “experienced fighter” from Sudan and was believed to be the leader of the group.
Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir said Omar Nabhan was a Kenyan of Arab origin and Khattab al-Kene a Somali linked to al-Shabab. Further details about Umayr had not yet been verified, he said.
Kenyan police chief David Kimaiyo told KTN television station it was now believed that four to six gunmen had carried out the attack, not 10 to 15.
“None of them managed to escape from the building after the attack,” he said.
David Kimaiyo also said that wanted British woman Samantha Lewthwaite had not been involved.
“We have also established that she was not part of the attackers in the building. There was no woman,” he said.
Samantha Lewthwaite, 29, is the widow of Jermaine Lindsay, one of the four suicide bombers who attacked London on July 7, 2005.
Kenya had earlier said five attackers were killed in the security operation and that nine people were in custody.
The latest CCTV footage is from a limited part of the complex and, with some eyewitnesses reporting a two-pronged attack, it is too early to say definitively how many gunmen were in the building.
In addition to the 67 people killed in the attack, a further 39 are still missing, according to the Kenyan Red Cross.
Al-Shabab is banned as a terrorist group by both the US and the UK and is believed to have between 7,000 and 9,000 fighters.
Its members are fighting to create an Islamic state in Somalia.
Unidentified foreign forces have launched a night-time raid on an al-Shabab militant base in the south Somali town of Barawe from the sea, reports say.
A fighter had been killed in the raid, a spokesman for the al-Shabab Islamist group told Reuters news agency.
Reports speak of residents in the militant-controlled town being woken by heavy gunfire before dawn prayers.
Al-Shabab claimed responsibility last month for a deadly attack on a Kenyan shopping mall.
At least 67 people were killed after militants stormed the Westgate mall in the capital, Nairobi, on September 21.
Unidentified foreign forces have launched a night-time raid on an al-Shabab militant base in the south Somali town of Barawe from the sea
An unnamed Somali intelligence official told the Associated Press that the targets of Saturday’s raid had been “high-profile” foreigners. The source did not say which country had carried out the operation.
Both US and French special forces have carried out raids on coastal targets in Somalia in recent years.
There was no immediate comment on Saturday’s alleged attack in Barawe from the Western-backed authorities in Somalia.
According to the Somali news website Midnimo, two helicopters were also involved in the raid.
“Westerners in boats attacked our base at Barawe beach and one was martyred from our side,” Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, described as al-Shabab’s spokesman for military operations, told Reuters by telephone.
Another al-Shabab member, named as Abu Mohamed, told AP that “foreign” soldiers had attacked a house in Barawe.
Militants rushed to the scene to capture a foreign soldier but were unsuccessful, he added.
Western navies tasked with fighting piracy patrol the seas off Somalia, which has been beset by conflict for more than two decades.
In 2009, US Navy commandos attacked and killed an al-Qaeda leader, Kenyan-born Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, in a daylight raid on Barawe.
Washington has also used drones in Somalia to support the government and African Union forces in their battle against al-Shabab.
France carried out an unsuccessful raid to free a French intelligence agent in January. Two French commandos were killed and al-Shabab later reported that it had killed the agent.