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Zuma: Support Kenya’s efforts in Somalia
September 23, 2013, 11:14 am

A brazen attack at the Westgate Mall in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi has killed at least 39, according to Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta [AP]

The Somali al-Shabab movement has claimed responsibility for the attack [AP]

South Africa has condemned the attack at the Westgate Mall in Nairobi where 69 people are reported dead and more than 170 have sustained injuries.

“South Africa continues to support Kenya’s and the international community’s efforts aimed at peacekeeping, stability, democracy and nation-building in Somalia,” President Jacob Zuma said in a statement.

The Somali al-Shabab movement has claimed responsibility for the attack.

A major assault was launched by the Kenyan forces on Monday morning to free the remaining hostages even as the attackers remained inside the mall.

Al-Shabab on its Twitter feed warned that the “Kenyan government shall be held responsible for any loss of life as a result of such an imprudent move. The call is yours!”

The South African president has sent his condolences to the Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“Terrorism in any form and from whichever quarter cannot be condoned, and South Africa stands firmly with the international community in condemning all terrorism, and this act in particular. We wish the Kenyan government every success in rapidly resolving this issue with as little further loss of life as possible,” said President Zuma.

The South African High Commission in Nairobi said it is monitoring the situation in close liaison with the Kenyan authorities.

French, Dutch, South African, Indian, Canadian and Chinese nationals are among the foreigners confirmed killed.

Consular assistance is being provided to the next of kin of the deceased South African.

Al-Shabab says it carried out the attack in response to Kenyan military operations in Somalia.

Source: Agencies