Somalia’s al Shabaab group killed five police officers in north-east Kenya, an area where the Islamist militants have previously attacked military and civilian targets, a senior official said.
“Four police officers and a reservist died in the attack,” said Eric Oronyi, deputy commissioner for Lafey sub-county in Mandera county. Three other officers were wounded and one was in serious condition.
“This is al Shabaab who carried out the attack because we are near the Kenya-Somalia border.”
Oronyi said the attackers destroyed a mobile phone transmission mast to disrupt communications.
Al Shabaab is fighting to topple Somalia’s Western-backed central government and establish own rule based on strict interpretation of Islamic law.
The group conducts frequent assaults in Kenya, mostly bordering Somalia, to put pressure on the Kenyan government to withdraw its troops from Somalia.
Kenya is part of the African Union peacekeeping force AMISOM, which is defending Somalia’s government against al Shabaab.