Kenyan security forces continued to battle their way through an upscale Nairobi mall on Tuesday that al-Shabab gunmen seized four days ago.
Officials say at least 62 people have been killed in the attack on the Westgate shopping centre, and more than 170 wounded. The figures are expected to rise once the siege finally ends and the mall is secured.
The mall attack is the most significant strike in Kenya since al-Qaeda bombed the US Embassy in Nairobi in 1998, killing more than 200 people. Somalia-based al-Shabab – established in 2006 after Ethiopian troops invaded that country – has claimed responsibility for the brazen assault.
The Islamist group has lost ground in recent years to Somali government soldiers and African Union peacekeepers. Linked to al-Qaeda, al-Shabab enforces a strict interpretation of Sharia, or Islamic law, in all areas under its control.