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Archive for the tag “Associated Press”

Blast in Kenya capital Nairobi ‘may have been bomb’

“The BBC’s Kevin Mwachiro: “There were lots of clothes and shoes that were strewn in front of the store”

Kenya’s police say an explosion which injured 33 in the capital, Nairobi, may have been caused by a bomb, after initially blaming an electrical fault.

The blast tore apart a shopping complex on Moi Avenue at lunchtime.

A witness has said a bag was abandoned next to her just before the explosion.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga has said the blast had a terrorist link. Militant group al-Shabab has repeatedly threatened to stage revenge attacks after Kenya sent troops to Somalia.

There has been a string of grenade and bomb blasts across Kenya in recent months, killing several people.

Shoes and clothes scattered

Five of those injured are said to be in a critical condition.

Police spokesman Eric Kiraithe told the BBC he no longer believed an electrical fault had caused the blast, as police commissioner Mathew Iteere had initially suggested.

A man injured during an explosion is assisted from the scene in Kenya"s capital Nairobi, May 28, 2012. Some 28 people are said to have been injured by the blast

In a statement, Mr Kiraithe said the cause of the explosion had not been established.

“The investigating team is exploring the possibility that the blast was caused by criminals using an improvised explosive device,” he said.

“Initial examination of the scene indicates that the possibility of a conventional bomb is remote.”

Mr Odinga told reporters at the site of the blast: “This is terrorism… this is a heinous act, we are under threat, but we will not be cowed.”

Kenya Power, the country’s sole electricity distributor, has also ruled out any electrical malfunction as the cause of the blast.

The BBC’s Kevin Mwachiro says glass and shoes and clothes from the small shops inside the building were scattered across the street.

TV pictures have shown people pouring into the streets from nearby buildings to get away from the scene of the fire, the AP news agency reports.

Moi Avenue is a major road which would have been busy during the lunch hour, AP says.

According to an eyewitness, there was a huge blast and debris flew in different directions injuring people in the vicinity, the Nation newspaper reports.

The powerful explosion shook buildings in the surrounding area and the evacuation process began, the Nation says.”

Source : BBC News


#Africa : ‘Counter coup’ gunfight in Mali’s capital Bamako

Troops in Mali who launched a coup in March have exchanged fire with the presidential guard in the capital Bamako, officials and witnesses say.

A junta spokesman said guardsmen loyal to ousted President Amadou Toumani Toure were trying to reverse the coup.

The junta later said the situation was back under control, amid reports that several people died in the gunfight.

While the junta has handed power to an interim government, it is still thought to wield considerable influence.

Message on TV

The gunfire followed an attempt by junta loyalists to arrest the former head of the presidential guard, journalist Martin Vogl in Bamako told the BBC.

He said clashes continued around the state broadcasting building and several other locations in the capital late into the night.

One eyewitness told the Reuters news agency that the streets were deserted. Electricity has been cut in several part of the city.


Members of the “Red Berets” presidential guards unit reportedly entered the broadcaster’s building, which has been controlled by pro-junta forces since the coup.

“These are elements of the presidential guard from the old regime and they’re trying to turn things around,” junta spokesman Bacary Mariko told the Reuters news agency.

He later said the airport in Bamako had come under attack from anti-coup forces, and that he was expecting an attack on a pro-coup base in Kati, north of Bamako, according to the Associated Press news agency.

But several hours later the junta aired a message on Mali’s TV, saying the airport, the state broadcasting building and the Kati base was under its control.

The 22 March coup, which ousted President Toure, was led by soldiers who accused Mr Toure of failing to combat an insurgency in the north.

Last week the leader of the coup, Cpt Amadou Sanago, rejected the decision of West African regional bloc Ecowas to send troops to the West African country.

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