|An injured lady being rescued from the scene.|
Somali's militant al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for the attack. The Muslim extremists, who have killed Kenyans near the border and are blamed for church bombings, vowed two years ago to attack Nairobi after Kenya sent troops into Somalia to get control of the situation there.
The rising threat of Islamic extremism is Africa's most alarming trend. According to Maj. Gen Carlton Everhart II, AFRICOM senior Air Force commander, "the growing threat that al-Qaida affiliates are posing to nations in north, east, and southwest Africa has really changed the dynamic by making counterterrorism a growth business on the continent."
|A shopper being helped out of the mall.|
Kenyan police told the Daily Nation, the country's leading newspaper, that at least 26 people died and more than 50 were injured in the attack, which was allegedly carried out by five to 10 gunmen with AK-47s and other sophisticated weapons. The Red Cross reports 30 dead, according to Easy FM radio.Nairobi Police Chief Benson Kibue called the incident "a terrorist attack" according to the Associated Press. Witnesses told local news media and the Associated Press that the gunman asked Muslims to leave before opening fire. Kenya is 83% Christian with a sizable Muslim community — about 11% of its 44 million people.
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(All photos courtesy of nbcnews.com)