Militants attacked the Pandanguo police station, located in Lamu county, early Wednesday morning, July 5, forcing villagers to flee to neighboring areas. According to local authorities, the assailants also destroyed a communications tower located in the area. It remains unclear whether the attack resulted in any casualties.
No group has claimed responsibility for the incident, but Al-Shabaab is suspected. Security officers have been deployed to investigate.
Al-Shabaab regularly carries out attacks near the porous border with Somalia where the group is based, as well as in coastal areas popular with tourists and the capital Nairobi. The militant group has been effectively at war with the country since Kenyan forces engaged in the international fight against the terrorist group beginning in October 2011. Al-Shabaab, which seeks to topple Somalia's government and impose its own harsh interpretation of Sharia law, says it will continue to carry out attacks in Kenya until Nairobi withdraws its troops from the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
Individuals in Kenya are advised to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the relevant authorities and be particularly cautious when visiting sites deemed particularly likely to be targeted in an attack (government buildings, places of worship, tourist sites, etc.). Due to these and other security concerns, many Western governments advise against travel to a number of regions in the country, including areas bordering Somalia (parts of Mandera, Wajir, Garissa, and Lamu counties), Ethiopia, and South Sudan, as well as nonessential travel to the city of Mombasa. Several Nairobi neighborhoods, including Eastleigh and Pangani, are also best avoided.
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