Nairobi, Kenya – An attack by al-Shabab gunmen has left at least 62 people dead and more than 175 injured in a mall in Kenya’s capital.
The gunmen, reportedly armed with assault weapons and grenades, entered the Westgate Shopping Centre at about noon local time (09:00GMT) on Saturday.
Security forces arrived at the scene about an hour after the attack began, and stormed inside. As police and mall security engaged the attackers in a gunfight, many shoppers escaped the mall – many with severe injuries were helped by their fellow civilians. It was not known how many more remained trapped in various parts of the centre, either held hostage by al-Shabab fighters or pinned down in the cross-fire, though several took to Twitter, desperately documenting what was happening.
The Kenyan military, reportedly assisted by Western and Israeli security forces, laid siege to the mall in an attempt to save the hostages and capture the attackers.
Kenya’s interior minister, Joseph Ole Lenku, said on Monday that the Kenyan forces were in full control of the situation.
“The process of evacuating hostages has gone on very well and we are very certain that if any, there are very very little hostages in the building. We have done search of the building and we can confirm that the hostages almost all of them have been evacuated,” said Lenku during a news conference.
Photographer Will Swanson is on site in Nairobi documenting the events.