Kenya vows to keep troops in Somalia

2013-10-01 19:04
President Uhuru Kenyatta. (PPS)

President Uhuru Kenyatta. (PPS)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Nairobi - Kenya's president vowed on Tuesday to keep the country's troops in Somalia until that country is stabilised, after a Somali Islamic extremist group said it staged a deadly attack on an upmarket Nairobi mall to force the withdrawal of Kenyan troops from its Horn of Africa nation.

The al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabaab once controlled much of Somalia and most of the capital, Mogadishu, but has since been pushed back by Kenyan and other African Union forces to the southern reaches of the country.

The insurgent group's 21 September attack on the Westgate mall killed more than 60 people.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said that he would set up a commission of inquiry to see where there were lapses in operations to seize the mall from the terrorists and save those trapped inside, and how officials can avoid them in future. He spoke at a national inter-religion prayer service Tuesday. Kenyan officials have said the military caused a collapse of floors in the mall during the four-day stand-off.

"If their desire is for Kenya to pull out from Somalia, my friends all they need to do is what they should have done 20 years ago, which is to put their house in order and Kenya will come back to Kenya," Kenyatta said.

Somalia is struggling to establish a functional government after decades of conflict that was sparked by the 1991 ouster of long-time dictator Said Barre by warlords who then turned on each other. Al-Shabaab militants have been waging an insurgency against Somalia's UN backed government.

The chair of the defence committee in Kenya's parliament, Ndungu Githinji, said earlier in the day that Kenya had no choice in 2011 but to go into Somalia and stabilize the country to safeguard Kenya's security and economic well-being.

Speaking during a TV breakfast show Githinji said contraband goods were being smuggled through Somalia into Kenya and Somali piracy in the Indian ocean was increasing the cost of importing and exporting goods, because of rise in insurance premiums.

Al-Shabaab militants would cross into Kenya and kidnap tourists, which he said was threatening the security of the country and the tourism industry, a key pillar of Kenya's economy.

Read more on:    al-shabaab  |  al-qaeda  |  uhuru kenyatta  |  somalia  |  kenya  |  east africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Meet instagram star, Pumpkin the racoon

With 300 000 followers and growing Pumpkin is winning over the internet!



The cats that cost R35 000
Miley Cyrus can’t get enough of her new puppy
13 guilty pets
Meet SA's top poacher-catcher

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

In order to really connect to your feelings, you need to quieten your mind. Let go of expectations and connect to the moment more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.