Mandera passengers stranded following increased Al-Shabaab attacks

Written By: KNA

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Mandera residents are calling on the government to fast track restoration of security as runaway banditry has adversely affected the transport sector in the area.

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The residents who spoke in the major bus terminus for buses plying to Nairobi said they have shelved going to the capital via the road owing to increased Al-Shabaab attacks targeting security agents and non-local travelers.

Mandera Bus chairman Mohamed Bardad said though transport for vehicles plying to Nairobi resumed on Monday, non-local travelers have been advised to use the Moyale route and avoid the Garissa road.

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Several vehicles including a PSV vehicle have been attacked on the Mandera/ Garissa route with militants scaling up their campaign of attacking non local travelers using the road.

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On Sunday morning a PSV vehicle was attacked at Jabibar area near the Bamboo police post on the Mandera/ Garissa route.

The driver of the vehicle and passengers escaped unhurt after gunmen believed to be Al-Shabaab militants’ sprayed bullets on the vehicle before planting an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) that went off seconds after the PSV car had passed the dragnet.

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The incident which happened a day after local bus companies had suspended transport owing to insecurity is the sixth attack on public transport vehicles since 2015.

Abdi Rashid Mohamed a stranded passenger asked the government to upscale security on the roads saying he has suspended his journey to Nairobi over fear of attacks by the Al-Shabaab.

Mandera police commander Jeremiah Kosiom in a separate interview said he has instructed sub county police commanders to increase number of police patrolling the roads.

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The Al-Shabaab have increased attacks in the past three months after they abducted Cuban doctors in broad day light, before planting an IED targeting a police escort vehicle which escaped a landmine. A PSV vehicle was attacked around the same area with passengers escaping unhurt.

The attacks followed the killing of two Al-Shabaab militants in combat by Kenyan forces where two others were injured and a national police reservist killed by the militants.


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