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Three Somali students killed, seven injured in Kenya-Uganda border attack

Wednesday July 10, 2024

Family members of the victims gather to speak to the press following the tragic attack at the Kenya-Uganda border, expressing their grief and calling for justice.

NAIROBI, Kenya (HOL) — Three Somali individuals were killed and seven others injured in a violent attack at the border between Kenya and Uganda, according to emerging reports. The victims, who were all young people studying in Uganda and Kenya, were attacked by angry locals wielding swords and clubs.

The attack occurred last Friday when the victims, travelling to Kampala, Uganda, from Nairobi in a small vehicle, lost their way and ended up in a village. The villagers, armed with swords and clubs, pulled the youths from their vehicle and assaulted them, according to a relative of one of the deceased. The driver had stopped to ask for directions when the locals attacked, their relatives said.

The attack has sparked significant fear among Somalis travelling between the two countries, leading to a halt in Somali-operated transport services between Uganda and Kenya. Families of the deceased and injured have called on the Kenyan government to seek justice for their loved ones, who they say were unjustly killed and injured while traveling.

On Tuesday, in Nairobi, Osob Ali Mohamed, who was among the victims, was buried. 

Abdirahman Mohamed Yusuf, one of the passengers, told the BBC they were attacked when the vehicle veered off the road and stopped. "The driver left us, and we stayed in the vehicle. Shortly after, we were attacked. Locals swarmed us, and the driver tried to talk to them. They told us to get out, and then the beatings began," Abdirahman said.

He described the attack as immediate and brutal, with the assailants using clubs, knives, machetes, and sticks. "I was among those hit first. They struck my head with a club, and I lost consciousness. I sustained head injuries and a broken arm and am now in the hospital," he said. Police arrived later and rescued them.

Composite photo showing Osob Ali Mohamed in her graduation attire (right) and family members attending her burial following the tragic attack at the Kenya-Uganda border (left).

Osob Ali Mohamed died at the scene from a machete wound to the head. Her uncle, Mahad Muse Ahmed, confirmed to the BBC that her attackers later threw her into a burning vehicle, causing severe burns. Osob was a student in Uganda travelling to Kampala on her way to an overseas trip.

Videos of the incident, shared on social media by locals, showed the beatings and severe injuries sustained by some victims. Mahad Muse said they identified their daughter through these videos. He also reported that the Kenyan government has arrested the perpetrators, who were allegedly involved in child abductions in the area.

The injured are receiving treatment at a hospital in Bungoma. 

Kenyan police have yet to issue an official statement regarding the incident.


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