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Night travel banned in Lamu as attacks raise alarm levels

19 July 2014, 16:26 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - Night travel has been banned along the Malindi- Lamu highway to facilitate coordinated efforts by police and security agents to catch up with the perpetrators of attacks in the region.

The move was made Saturday and announced by Lamu County boss Miiri Njenga who said that the move would facilitate the government's efforts to ensure that they catch up with criminals who shot dead seven people in Witu Friday night.

" No travel past 6PM on the highway until further notice, he said Saturday.

He said that the move was meant to stall any night activity in and out of Boni forest which is said to house the terrorists.

He also insisted that the attacks are the work of politically instigated agendas and not the Al Shabaab terror group which has already taken responsibility for the latest attacks.

Al Shabaab insurgents claimed responsibility on Saturday for the attack on a bus and other vehicles. They blocked the bus with their car and sprayed it with bullets. They also attacked two lorries carrying mangos.

Gunmen have killed about 100 people on Kenya's coast since mid-June. Al Shabaab has claimed responsibility for many of the attacks but the government, including President Uhuru Kenyatta, has suggested local politicians were behind the incidents.

Kenya Red Cross, which has set up camps for residents who have fled the area, said on its Twitter account that seven people were killed in the attacks.

Njenga, said the bus driver and four policemen were killed during Friday's attacks.

"Eight people are receiving treatment at the Mpeketoni hospital and most of them have bullet wounds," Njenga said, noting that there were unconfirmed reports two more of the passengers on the bus had died.

Hundreds of families have fled their homes in Lamu despite government assurances that the attacks will soon end.

This week police said military planes had bombed at least four suspected hideouts in Lamu County's Boni forest.

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