It’s over: Uhuru says all Dusit Hotel attack terrorists killed

A woman reacts as she is reunited with family after being evacuated from the DusitD2 compound in Nairobi after a blast followed by a gun battle rocked the upmarket hotel complex on January 15, 2019. [Photo, AFP]

All the terrorists in the DusitD2 hotel attack have been neutralized, President has told the nation.

Speaking from State House Nairobi flanked by Deputy President William Ruto, CSs Raychelle Omamo (Defence), Monica Juma (Foreign Affairs) and Chief of Defence Forces Samson Mwathethe, the President lauded acts of patriotism and courage in the wake of the attack.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has assured visitors of their safety in Kenya, saying multiple security efforts are underway to defeat terrorist groups.

“My heart goes out to innocent men and women violated by the senseless violence,” Uhuru said.

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He added that Kenya is governed by rules and embraces peaceful co-existence.

Uhuru regretted the incident and commended the quick response by fighting teams who neutralised the threat.

“We will not forget those who hurt our children,” he said.

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This morning elite units killed two terrorists at Dusit Hotel as the operation continued.

The President also praised civilians who looked out for one another.

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“For every act of evil there were dozens of acts of patriotism and courage.”

More than 700 have been evacuated from the start of the Tuesday attack to this morning.

Uhuru said Kenyans have shown the world the best part of us - brave, loving, unbowed.

He said an operation was underway to hunt down the terrorists both inside and outside Kenya.

He added that security agencies and the judicial systems will be strengthened to do away with extremists.

The presidential address followed a dawn meeting of the National Security Council.

“We’ll seek out all those involved in planning, functioning and execution of the act,” he said.

Uhuru said security is a joint responsibility and those with information should contact the authorities.

“Terrorism belongs outside our human community,” he said.

It has been more than 16 hours since the first gunshots were heard at Riverside's DusitD2 boutique hotel.

President Uhuru announced that all the terrorists have been neutralised and with 14 people confirmed dead and 176 rescued.

Kenyans have generously donated blood as the country comes to terms with the attack reminiscent of the Westgate Mall.

In the September 21, 2013 terror attack at Westgate, 71 people died and more than 170 injured.

Security agencies seem to have acquired enough lessons from the Westgate attack. Kenyans praised the response speed and coordinated efforts to arrest the situation.

By Wednesday morning, reports were circulated of two terrorists being gunned down by the special forces.

Five Al Shabaab terrorists conducted the raid. One blew himself up, signalling the beginning of the raid.

Ambulances and fire engines dotted the Dusit complex as well as Kenya Red Cross personnel in their red jackets.

In previous major terror attacks, like the Westgate or the April 2, 2015 Garissa University raid, Kenyans came out to donate blood and offer support.

Some 148 people, mostly students, were killed in the Garissa attack.

The one woman who offered breakfast to soldiers at the DusitD2 scene ran out of supply and had to go back for more.

A few others supplied water.

While medical teams were on high alert, crowds thinned as the operation was still ongoing as journalists were asked to be a kilometre away to clear the way for emergency service vehicles.

Between 8 am and 10 am, there were active gunshots in the complex.

An officer was reported injured and was rushed to the hospital.

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DusitD2President Uhuru KenyattaRiverside Terror AttackDusit complex