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Bandits shoot dead two people in fight over pastures in Mwingi

EASTERN
By Cyrus Ombati | February 22nd 2017

A father and his son view a carcass of a camel in Dukan, Marsabit County on January, 16, 2017. The drought situation has forced herders to cross borders in search of pasture for their livestock.

Two more people were Tuesday night killed by Somali bandits in Mwingi in retaliatory attack after five camels were slashed to death in fight over pastures.

Five others are hospitalised with bullet wounds following the attack that happened minutes after government officials left a peace meeting in the area.

This increased to four, the number of people killed in the area since Monday night.

Police headquarters said an operation had been ordered in the area to drive away the Somali herders as part of efforts to contain the violence.

More officers have been sent to the area to contain the situation that has left several houses burnt.

Top police commanders led by regional commander Gideon Amalla visited the area on Tuesday following the Monday incident and held a meeting with locals. And minutes after they had left, the bandits emerged from the bushes and shot at the villagers killing two and injured five others.

“We are carrying out an operation to drive out grazers who are behind this conflict,” said Amalla on Wednesday.

The affected homesteads are near the volatile border of Kitui and Tana River counties; the villagers have left their homes and have been camping in bushes in fear of attacks.

Officials say the death toll from similar attacks has now hit 30 since 2016.

Several schools have closed down due to insecurity in the area.

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