After some Western embassies, including the French one, warned their compatriots in Kenya last week that these would be dangerous days in terms of terrorism, on Monday, a matatu (a typical Kenyan mini-bus) was involved in the explosion of an improvised explosive device that killed 10 people and injured another ten.
The matatu was travelling on a route close to the border with Somalia, in Mandera County, and the device was placed 8 km from the county town of the same name. Before the explosion, witnesses said they heard gunshots, presumably from the AK47 assault rifle. One suspect was detained and it is thought that he may have five other accomplices. A similar attack had taken place last year, around March, when a bus was the victim of a similar homemade explosive.
Suspicions suggest that it was the work of the al-Shabaab jihadist group, which is very active in the area with its porous borders with Somalia, where the group operates most. The law enforcement agencies intervened promptly and in the following days the entire area of the north-east of the country received a substantial reinforcement of security, as it is considered a high risk area for attacks.
In the last period, al-Shabaab’s activity had particularly intensified in the area, with the country’s law enforcement and security forces as its main targets.