Muslim terrorists kill 147 at Kenya University in an attack targeting mainly Xtians
Survivors say the masked gunmen singled out non-Muslim students and gunned them down without mercy as others ran for their lives.
Video: Footage Emerges From Kenya Massacre
An attack by masked terrorists who stormed a university in eastern Kenya has left at least 147 people dead.
Around 80 more have been confirmed as wounded in the siege at Garissa University, which has now ended after the four attackers detonated their suicide vests.
The gunmen hurled grenades and fired automatic rifles as students were sleeping, shooting dead dozens before setting Muslims free and holding Christians and others hostage.
There were unconfirmed reports from some Kenyan media sources that a number of the students had been beheaded.
Winnie Njeri, one of those who escaped, told News24 Kenya: “We saw beheaded bodies when we escaped. It is very bad, they have killed many people.”
Survivors said the masked attackers singled out non-Muslim students and gunned most of them down without mercy.
Others ran for their lives as bullets whistled through the air.
Two security guards, one policeman and one soldier were also killed in the siege, which ended 15 hours after the gunmen launched their assault.
The four gunmen had strapped themselves with explosives which they detonated as soldiers burst into the dormitory where they were holed up, according to Interior Minister Joseph Nkaiserry.
When gunfire struck the attackers, the militants exploded “like bombs,” Mr Nkaissery said, adding that the shrapnel wounded some of the officers.
Somalia’s al Shabaab militant group has claimed responsibility for the pre-dawn attack, which is the country’s deadliest since the US embassy bombings in 1998.
Student Michael Bwana, who managed to flee, said most of those taken hostage were girls.
Kenya Police Chief Joseph Boinet said the gunmen forced their way into the university at 5.30am by shooting at the guards manning the main gate.
It is not clear if any of the students the militants said they were holding were alive at the time of the final assault.
However, officials said more than 500 students had been rescued.
Authorities have offered a $215,000 (£145,000) reward for a man called Mohammed Mohamud, who has been identified as a possible mastermind of the attack.
Collins Wetangula, the vice chairman of the student union, said he was preparing to take a shower when he heard gunshots coming from a dorm.
“All I could hear were footsteps and gunshots; nobody was screaming because they thought this would lead the gunmen to know where they are,” he said.
“The gunmen were saying sisi ni al-Shabab (Swahili for we are al-Shabab).
“If you were a Christian you were shot on the spot.
“With each blast of the gun I thought I was going to die.”
Grace Kai, a student at a neighbouring college, said there had been warnings of an imminent attack.
“Some strangers had been spotted in Garissa town and were suspected to be terrorists,” she said.
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