A note on the blog from yesterday – the blast was written by John Fale I believe who was born near Pilger. Pilger needs our help.
Our partners on Kenya need our help too and we are working to make that help efficient and sufficient. The bottom part of this blog is about an event in Kenya two days ago. There was another attack in the same area today June 17.
We have worked with the church in Kenya to try and get the Project 24 programs reinvigorated and on the right track with a business plan and some new staffing. It is a slow process for a number of reasons including internal strife and politics but there is a huge issue with terrorists and the Islamic movements that take advantage of the confusion and the issues that surround all the countries in the Mideast, the North of Africa and Sudan and Somali both of which border on Kenya. Kenya is being attacked in some way at some point everyday and that is one of the reasons that the Mary Okeyo scholarship trips have been halted for the time being. Please pray for our friend and partners there as well as for our missionaries and their families.
This from the Reuters News Service.
(Reuters) – At least 50 people were killed when gunmen in two minibuses sped into a town on Kenya’s coast, shooting soccer fans watching a World Cup match in a television hall and targeting two hotels, a police post and a bank, officials and witnesses said on Monday. Police said Somalia’s al Shabaab Islamist group was most likely to blame for Sunday night’s assault on the town of Mpeketoni, which lies on the Indian Ocean coastline that runs north from Kenya’s main port of Mombasa to the Somali border.
Kenya’s interior minister referred to the attackers as “bandits” and there was no immediate claim of responsibility for the assault, the latest in a spate of gun and bomb attacks in recent months that have hurt the struggling tourist industry.
Kenya, which has blamed al Shabaab for previous attacks, had said it would be on alert during the World Cup to ensure public showings of matches were kept safe.
“The attackers were so many and were all armed with guns. They entered the video hall where we were watching a World Cup match and shot indiscriminately at us,” Meshack Kimani told Reuters by telephone. “They targeted only men but I was lucky. I escaped by hiding behind the door.”
The attack could heighten existing worries in other African nations such as Nigeria, which is battling the Boko Haram Islamist insurgency, that bars and other venues drawing crowds by hosting World Cup match screenings could become targets.
Sunday’s assault is the worst in Kenya since last September when al Shabaab gunmen attacked Nairobi’s Westgate shopping mall, leaving 67 people dead.
After Westgate, Al Shabaab warned of more attacks, saying they were determined to drive Kenyan troops out of Somalia. Kenya, whose soldiers are deployed as part of an African peacekeeping force battling militants, says it won’t pull out.
The gunmen raced into Mpeketoni in two minibuses, the kind used as public taxis in Kenya, and attacked their targets with guns and at least one explosive device. The government said they also raided the nearby settlement of Kibaoni.
Witnesses said there were about 30 gunmen. A police officer said all the victims were men with no women and children killed. “After they attacked the area, they went round the town in the vehicles shooting in the air and chanting slogans in the Somali language,” said 28-year-old Issah Birido, who survived the Mpeketoni attack by climbing a tree, hidden by the darkness.