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Kenyan Police Blame Al-Shabab For Blast Near Somalia That Left Officers Dead

By Bobby Allyn NPR

Police officials in Kenya say the al-Shabab extremist group is responsible for a deadly explosion Saturday morning that reportedly killed 10 police officers near the country’s border with Somalia.

Around 10:50 a.m. local time, a police vehicle carrying 11 officers on patrol hit an improvised explosive device, killing several of the officers, Kenya police spokesman Charles Owino told NPR.

The 10 deaths were reported by The Associated Press but Kenyan officials say they’re still trying to confirm the number of police officer casualties, Owino said.

Those killed, according to the AP, were pursuing extremists who had kidnapped police reservists.

In a statement to NPR, Kenya’s Inspector General of Police Hilary Mutyambai said additional resources have been deployed near the Somali border, including aerial surveillance.

Al-Shabab, the Somali-based militant group, has for years been staging retaliatory attacks against Kenyan security forces since the start of a 2011 campaign by Kenya’s government to cross the border and try to drive out the militants from Somalia.

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