Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Dozens of Bodies Are Feared Buried in Mall Rubble as the Scale of Collapse Is Revealed

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Dozens of Bodies Are Feared Buried in Mall Rubble as the Scale of Collapse Is Revealed

Article excerpt

Byline: Benedict Moore-Bridger and Catrina Stewart in Nairobi

THE scale of the destruction wreaked during the Nairobi shopping mall massacre was laid bare today in shocking new pictures.

Video footage shows a huge hole in the Westgate complex's roof which collapsed along with three floors of the building during a fourday battle between Kenyan forces and al Shabab terrorists.

Dozens of bodies are thought to be trapped in the rubble and British officials say the number of UK citizens killed could rise to 10.

The Kenyan Red Cross said 71 people are listed missing, raising fears that the death toll -- which includes 61 civilians, six security personnel and five militants -- could rise significantly.

But interior minister Joseph Ole Lenku insisted that there was an "insignificant" number of bodies left in the mall, despite militants' claims that 137 hostages had died in the government's final assault to end the four-day siege, which started on Saturday. He warned that it could take as long as a week to reach and identify the dead trapped in the rubble but said: "We strongly believe... that there are insignificant numbers of bodies still holed up."

The comments have been met with surprise after reports that government soldiers involved in the operation revealed "many hostages, both adults and children" were seen inside the building and had not yet been accounted for.

The hole in the mall's roof was caused by Kenyan soldiers who fired rocket-propelled grenades inside, knocking out a support column, a government official told The Associated Press. The official, who insisted he not be identified because he was sharing security information, said the soldiers fired to distract a terrorist sniper so that hostages could be evacuated.

The roof collapsed on Monday, shortly after four large explosions followed by black smoke. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.