Somali militants wielding automatic weapons attacked a small Kenyan coastal town, assaulting the police station, setting two hotels on fire, and spraying bullets into the street. At least 48 people (updated number) were killed, officials said Monday.
Kenya's top police commander, David Kimaiyo, also said that the gunmen attacked a bank. The assault came late Sunday night as town residents were watching World Cup matches on TV. Authorities blamed al-Shabab, Somalia's Al-Qaeda-linked terror group.
The attack occurred in the town of Mpeketoni, which is about 20 kilometres southwest of the tourist centre of Lamu. Any tourism in Mpeketoni is mostly local, with few foreigners visiting the region. The town is about 100 kilometres from the Somali border.
Kenya has experienced a wave of gunfire and explosive attacks in recent months. The U.S., U.K., France, Australia, and Canada have all recently upgraded their terror threat warnings for the country. U.S. Marines behind sandbag bunkers are now stationed on the roof of the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi.