Tag Archives: al-Shabab

147 dead students in Kenya and our deafening silence

By ZOYA ANWER

Watching the 8am news is a part of my daily routine now — it helps kickstart my mind as I set out to work, it provides ‘food for thought’ for that part of me that isn’t still numb from working in a newsroom.

Yesterday, as I sipped my morning tea, I was thinking about the Pakistanis in Yemen cheering as the fleet arrived on time, their cheers drowning out the pleas of their ‘fellowmen’ caught in a war forced upon them but, well, at least ‘my people’ were safe and sound.

Little did I know this deep nationalist sentiment would ricochet as the good news was followed by the report of 147 students killed in the Garissa University College campus in Kenya.

I gasped as I saw the number for it instantly took me back to December 16. It felt like déjà vu.

Was it? It had to be. The last time I checked the figure it was around 20.

As the day progressed, I failed to understand the absolute lack of an outcry. This here was the deadliest attack in Kenya after almost a decade. And yet, all eyes fixed on Lausanne, where world powers and Iran were meeting to agree on a framework for a nuclear deal?

Did the students running for their lives in their nightwear just before the break of dawn not matter? To anyone?

I remember how the Peshawar attack shook all of us to our very core.

We rushed to our corners to shed tears silently before bracing for the task of carefully cropping pictures and choosing words. This was Peshawar too, for the militants of Al-Shebab used the same tactics: they attacked students, mostly non-Muslims, to what they called teaching the Kenyan government a lesson for its military intervention in Sudan.

The very name Al-Shebab is ironic because Shebab means prime youth. So cruel were these ‘defenders of the youth’ that they promised the students their lives on the condition that they step out of their dorm rooms and form rows. Once the students obeyed, they were all shot at in the back of the headone by one.

“If you want to survive, come out!” the militants yelled. “If you want to die, stay inside!”

The students’ affiliation with Islam, or the lack of it was also a deciding factor.

Continue reading 147 dead students in Kenya and our deafening silence

Al-Shabab stages deadly attack on Somalia luxury hotel

At least 11 people killed in an attack on the Central Hotel in Mogadishu, Somali police say.

By Hamza Mohamed

At least 11 people were killed, including a police officer, in an attack by al Shabab fighters on a luxury hotel in the Somali capital Mogadishu, police sources said. The Central Hotel in the heart of Mogadishu was hit by a two car bomb explosion, which was followed by heavy gunfire after attackers stormed into the building, police officers said. Al Jazeera has learned that the deputy mayor of Mogadishu, as well as two members of parliament were killed.   Analysis: Al-Shabab’s deadly attack in Mogadishu A government spokesman told Al Jazeera that contratry to earlier reports, the deputy prime minister was unhurt.

Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the raid in a phone call to Al Jazeera. The group claimed it had killed more than 20 senior government officials in attack.

“We have killed more than 20 senior officials working for the apostate government. They gathered thinking they were safe from the Mujahedeen,” al Shabab military operations spokesman, Abdiaziz abu Muscab told Al Jazeera.

“We hear gunshots inside. I am afraid the attackers have also gone inside the hotel,” police captain Farah Abdullahi told the Reuters news agency.

Another police officer also said attackers had entered the building and that government ministers and MPs were inside the hotel when it was attacked.

January hotel attack

Friday’s assault was the second on a hotel in Mogadishu in less than a month. On January 22, three Somali nationals were killed when a suicide car bomber blew himself up at the gate of a hotel housing the advance party of the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who visited the country days later.

A Somali intelligence official said that the Turkish delegation of around 70 members was staying at the hotel at the time of the attack but were unharmed.

Despite major setbacks in 2014, al-Shabab continues to wage a deadly campaign against Somalia’s government and remains a threat in Somalia and the East African region.

The group has carried out many attacks in Somalia and in neighbouring countries, including Kenya, whose armies are part of the African Union peacekeeping mission known as AMISOM.

Al-Shabab controlled much of Mogadishu during the years 2007 to 2011, but was pushed out of Somalia’s capital and other major cities by the AU forces.

Read more » Aljazeera
See more » http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/02/deaths-attack-luxury-hotel-somalia-capital-mogadishu-150220103959237.html

 

US government says terrorists could be in last stages of planning an attack in Kenya

By Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya — The U.S. government is warning that a terror attack on prominent government buildings and hotels in Kenya’s capital could be imminent.

The U.S. Embassy in Kenya said Monday the timing of the attack is not known but they believe it to be in its final planning stages. They did not give further details.

The embassy urged Americans to be vigilant.

Al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab militants from neighboring Somalia have vowed to carry out an attack on Kenya for sending troops into Somalia.

Kenya sent hundreds of troops into Somalia in October last year following a wave of kidnappings, including those of four Europeans on Kenyan soil, blamed on al-Shabab.

Courtesy: The Washington Post

 

Woman stoned to death for adultery in Somalia

MOGADISHU: A judge for an militant group in Somalia says a woman has been stoned to death and her boyfriend given 100 lashes for having an affair. Sheikh Ibrahim Abdirahman, the judge for the group al-Shabah, says the woman was killed on Tuesday in front of a crowed of some 200 people near the town of Wajid. Abdirahman says the 20-year-old woman had an affair with 20-year-old unmarried man and gave birth to a stillborn child. The militants that control much of southern Somalia have instituted a conservative reading of Sharia law. The stoning death was at least the fourth for adultery in Somalia over the last year. It was the second time a female has been killed. Last month, two men were stoned to death in Merka after being accused of spying.