Death toll expected to rise in Nairobi terror attack

World Today

Security forces help civilians flee the scene as cars burn behind, at a hotel complex in Nairobi, Kenya Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. Terrorists attacked an upscale hotel complex in Kenya’s capital Tuesday, sending people fleeing in panic as explosions and heavy gunfire reverberated through the neighborhood. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

Police are on high alert after a deadly assault at an upscale hotel and office complex in Nairobi.

At least five are dead and many more are injured – and that number is expected to rise.

As CGTN’s Sean Callebs reports, authorities have still not announced whether the attackers are dead, detained or on the run.

Chaos in Nairobi: Explosions, and gunfire, triggered by the Islamic militant group al-Shabab, that has ties to Al Qaeda.

It was a coordinated attack, starting with a suicide blast in the lobby of a seven-story luxury hotel and a bombing targeting several vehicles.

“I can now report that we have secured all the building that had been affected by these events. The security teams have evacuated scores of Kenyans and other nationalities from the building, Kenyan Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’l said.

Kenyan leaders said they are in the process of what they term, ‘mopping up’ -and beginning the forensic investigation.

Surveillance video showed what are believed to be the attackers closing in on the buildings. Authorities said the death toll could climb, and so many people were bloodied and wounded that there is a public call for blood donors.

“Working very closely with emergency services, we have been providing evacuation support for the public as well as counseling and other trauma services, Kenya’s national police chief Joseph Boinnet said.

Al Shabab has carried out a number of attacks in Kenya in the recent past. And, this assault drew immediate comparisons to the 2013 Westgate Mall attack that killed 67 at a luxury shopping mall.

Authorities said there is calm and the nation is secure, but fear the investigation into this crime will go on for days and weeks to come.