Nairobi - The Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldiers who were killed and injured in Somalia on Friday had only spent two days in that country, it has emerged.
The soldiers who belonged to 9th Kenya Rifles Formation in Eldoret were said to have been on their second tour of Somalia.
They had entered Somalia by road through Mandera, having left Eldoret two weeks ago.
According to Standard, KDF soldiers are deployed on rotational basis, with some being withdrawn after a certain period.
On Friday, al-Shabaab militants stormed an African Union (AU) base, killing dozens of KDF soldiers.
Kenyan troops, numbering between 80 and 250, were stationed at the base, according to the Defence CS Raychelle Omamo.
Officials have not given an official number of those killed, saying they had to inform next of kin and "verify" information before making it public.
A search mission has been ongoing, with reports indicating that some of those killed were "highly dismembered" and needed DNA sequencing of next of kin for identification.
Four wounded soldiers were airlifted back home on Sunday for specialised treatment.
It has been confirmed that al-Shabaab were holding 12 soldiers, who were being used as human shields, The Star reported.
This being the third major onslaught on the troops, Kenyans have called for their redeployment back home.