Kenya has triumphed over terrorists, President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a moving speech on Tuesday in the aftermath of an assault at a popular Nairobi mall that left at least 72 dead, including five gunmen.
After a four-day standoff, Kenyatta claimed to have finally “ashamed and defeated our attackers,” declaring that the last militants still holed up inside Westgate Mall had been killed, though the bodies of many civilians, perhaps dozens, had yet to be recovered, according to a report in the New York Times.
Kenyatta said that “intelligence reports had suggested that a British woman and two or three American citizens may have been involved,” but he could not confirm those reports.
American officials said they had not determined the identities of the attackers and were awaiting DNA tests and footage from the mall’s security cameras, but that the massacre had been meticulously planned to draw “maximum exposure.”
President announces three days of mourning
Kenyatta announced three days of mourning in response to the attack, according to All Africa.
During his televised national address, he said the national mourning period would start on Wednesday.
He confirmed the death toll at 72 – 61 civilians, six security officers and five “terrorists.” Eleven people were being detained, the report said.
Kenyetta also said three floors of the shopping center collapsed during “tail end” of the rescue operation by security forces, and more bodies may be trapped in the rubble.
“Fellow Kenyans, we have been badly hurt and feel great pain and loss, but we have been brave, united and strong. Kenya has stared down great evil and triumphed,” he said.