Senior al-Shabab member Adan Garar killed by drone strike in Somalia, claims Kenyan official

Garar is thought to have been one of the chief architects of the 2013 Westgate shopping centre siege, where gunmen executed 67 innocent civilians

Henry Austin
Friday 13 March 2015 01:10
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The al-Shabab Islamist group said it carried out the 2013 Westgate Mall attack in Kenya
The al-Shabab Islamist group said it carried out the 2013 Westgate Mall attack in Kenya

A senior member of the al-Shabab militant group who allegedly helped to plan the Westgate Mall attack in Kenya in 2013 has been killed by a drone strike in Somalia, according to a senior Kenyan official.

Adan Garar and two others are thought to have been killed after their car was targeted near the town of Bardhere, the official who did not wish to be named told the Associated Press. He did not say which country the drone belongs to.

Garar is thought to have been one of the chief architects of the four day siege at the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi, when gunmen stormed in and proceeded to execute innocent civilians. Children as young as five were among the 67 dead.

CCTV footage showed terrified shoppers fleeing the gunmen and cowering behind counters and large parts of the shopping centre were destroyed amid heavy fighting and a fire.

Somali Islamist group al-Shabab said it carried out the attack in response to Kenya's military operations in Somalia. Four of their gunmen were said to have died in the attack.

The Kenyan authorities were criticised at the time for what was seen by some analysts as a slow response to the attack and also lack of co-ordination between police and the army, an accusation strongly rejected by the country’s government.

Garar is also suspected of planning failed attacks on Kenya’s coast and in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, last year.

An al-Shabab on the Kenyan city of Mombassa was also foiled last March when anti-terror police intercepted an explosive laden car.

Officers said the group had planned to detonate it as part of a wave of simultaneous attacks on the city’s international airport, on a ferry and at a supermarket.

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