Al-Shabaab hijacks bus in northeastern Kenya: official

Suspected Islamic extremists from Somalia hijacked a bus./Photo (AP Photo/Farah Abdi Warsameh, File)

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Somalia militant group Al- Shabaab on Thursday hijacked a bus in Kenya’s northeastern county of Mandera, near the border with Somalia, officials have said.

Mandera County Commissioner Alex Ole Nkoyo said the bus was carrying 12 passengers when it was attacked by 10 armed men dressed in jungle uniform at noon at Takaba location.

The official said the militants reportedly asked all passengers to get off and took the bus into Somalia.

“They took the driver’s phone and money and sped off to Somalia, ” Nkoyo said, adding the security agency has launched a hunting.

The Al-Shabaab insurgents have many times carried out cross- border incursions where they abduct people for ransom.

Nkoyo said the driver was using the notorious Mandera-Lafey- Elwak road due to heavy floods in Rhamu. In November last year in the same route, the militants ambushed a Nairobi-bound bus, killing 28 non-Muslim passengers.

Nkoyo appealed to drivers to use the “safer” Mandera-Rhamu road instead of the Lafey one that is closer to the Kenya-Somalia border.

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