On 21 September 2013, gunmen attacked Westgate Shopping Mall. The attack, which lasted four days, resulted in the death of more than 70 people. The attackers held hostages and later engaged Kenyan police forces in gun battles.

The Islamist group Al Shabaab claimed responsibility for the incident, which it said was a retribution for the Kenyan military‘s deployment in Somalia

Reports by the Chief of General staff Gen Julius Karangi that the attackers tried to escape were refuted by the Al Shabaab.

In their online magazine, the terrorists said that “the martyrdom brigade” was comprised of “brothers who volunteered to enter into enemy ranks and cause havoc before being killed by the enemy”.

It quotes Al Shabaab spokesman, Ali Mohamed Rage as saying, “Karangi even had the audacity to claim that the martyrdom-seeking mujahedeen were seeking to abscond and escape from the mall,”  
He continues to say, “Westgate was not a fight, it was a message. The real fight is on the way,”

Additional reporting by the STAR
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