Armed gang raid police station in Garissa, burns vehicle

GARISSA, KENYA: An armed gang raided Bodhai police station in Garisa County bordering Lamu County on Monday night and burnt down a police vehicle before escaping in a fresh attack in the area.

Police officers who were on duty engaged the attackers briefly before they took cover. The attackers are believed to be Somalia’s Al-Shabaab militia.

The gang also attacked a dispensary in the area and deflated a water tank as they shot randomly.

There are bloodstains in the police compound, which gave an indication of an injury in the shootout, police said.

Police in the area say an assessment on the attack is ongoing and they are yet to make any arrest or establish more on the attack.

Garissa County Commissioner Harun Khator said he is yet to get more information on the attack and revealed he was on the way to the area.

Bodhai is in Ijara district and borders Lamu County.

The motive of the attack is yet to be known but many officers say it could be part of the gang that was behind the attacks of the last three months that left more than 100 people dead, property destroyed and many displaced.

Tension remained high in the area, police said but added they were in control.

Other officers said the attackers were out to free two Tanzanians who had been arrested earlier on in Kiunga area on Monday while trying to cross to Somalia.

The man and woman were later moved to unknown police station after it emerged they intended to join the militants for “moral support”.

“The suspects were moved through water and we think the gang thought they were at the police station and their intention may have been to free them,” said an officer in the area.

Lamu remains under tension as a curfew imposed there continues.