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Kenya Says All Hostages In Westgate Mall Freed

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Kenya said its security forces were in control of the Nairobi shopping mall where militants killed at least 62 people, and police were doing a final sweep of shops early on Tuesday after rescuing the last hostages.

An overnight silence outside the large, upmarket Westgate mall was broken at daybreak with a loud burst of gunfire from inside, suggesting the complex had not yet been fully secured. A lone military chopper circled above.

“Our forces are combing the mall floor by floor looking for anyone left behind.
We believe all hostages have been released,” the Ministry of Interior said on Twitter early on Tuesday, adding his forces were “in control” of the building.

A trickle of survivors left on Monday, but the fate of the missing was unclear four days after a group of between 10 and 15 militants stormed the mall, which with its rich clientele epitomised the African consumer bonanza that is drawing foreign investment to one of the world’s fastest growing regions.

Foreign Minister Amina Mohammad said in a US television interview that “two or three Americans” and a British woman were among the militants who led the attack, launched on Saturday and claimed by Somalia’s Al Qaida-linked al Shabaab group.

Mohammad told the “PBS Newshour” show the Americans were “young men, about between maybe 18 and 19” years old. They were of Somali origin or Arab origin, and had lived in the US, “in Minnesota and one other place”, she said.

US authorities are urgently looking into information from the Kenyan government that residents of Western countries, including the United States, may have been among the militants, US security sources said.

“We do monitor very carefully and have for some time been concerned about efforts by al Shabaab to recruit Americans or US persons to come to Somalia,” White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said.

He told reporters travelling with US President Barack Obama to the United Nations in New York that he had no direct information that Americans had participated in the attack.

Obama offered US support, saying he believed Kenya – the scene of one of al Qaeda’s first major attacks, in 1998, and a neighbour of chaotic Somalia – would continue to be a regional pillar of stability.

Obama, whose father was born in Kenya, said the United States stood with Kenyans against “this terrible outrage.” [Reuters]

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JUST IN: ECOWAS Lifts Sanctions On Mali

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ECOWAS Countries

ECOWAS Countries

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US President, Donald Trump, Wife Test Positive For Covid-19

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Donald Trump and Melania
Donald Trump and Melania

Donald Trump and wife, Melania Trump

President of the United States, Donald Trump, and his wife, Melania Trump have both tested positive for COVID-19.

The President took to his official Twitter handle on Friday to make this announcement.

Trump was last seen in public on Thursday afternoon, returning to the White House after a fundraising trip to New Jersey.

Also Read: What I Told Trump When He Accused Me Of Killing Christians – Buhari

On Thursday, he announced that his aide, Hope Hicks tested positive for the virus which has killed over 1 million people around the world.

He further revealed that he and the first lady had taken the test and waiting for the results before announcing the outcome on Friday.

 

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Mali: N’Daw, Coup Leader Goita Sworn In As President, VP

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President of Mali, N'Daw, coup leader, Goita
President of Mali, N'Daw, coup leader, Goita

President of Mali, N’Daw, coup leader, Goita

Retired Army Colonel, Bah N’Daw has been sworn in on Friday as the interim president of Mali and he is to head a transitional government following last month’s military coup in the country.

The swearing-in ceremony held in the country’s capital city of Bamako, where Colonel Assimi Goita, who led the military junta, was also sworn in as interim vice president.

This administration is to lead the government for a maximum of 18 months before organising national elections.

Also Read: Buhari Attends Virtual ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit Over Mali Crisis

It will be recalled that the country’s military executed a coup last month (August 18) which successfully removed the nation’s president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita from office.

Former President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, attended the ceremony alongside other members of the ECOWAS mediation team.

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