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20 Killed in Attack on Upscale Mall in Kenyan Capital



Kenya's Red Cross says at least 20 people were killed and dozens were wounded in an apparent terrorist attack on an upscale shopping mall in Nairobi.

Gunmen opened fire and tossed hand grenades Saturday at the Westgate Mall in Kenya's capital. Children were among the wounded.

Hours after the attack, hundreds of security forces battled the gunmen in an attempt to rescue those still trapped in the mall, which popular with wealthy Kenyans and foreigners.

The attack sent terrified shoppers fleeing. Many were evacuated from the building, where smoke was seen pouring out of one entrance.

Media are reporting the incident appears to have been a terrorist attack. The French news agency quotes a senior police official as saying a "terror gang" consisting of up to 10 people was behind the assault.

There has been no immediate claim of responsibility.



A U.N. statement says Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is alarmed by the attack and has spoken to Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta about it.

Nairobi has seen a series of grenade attacks since Kenyan troops crossed into Somalia to fight the Somali extremist group al-Shabab two years ago. The Westgate Mall has been identified as one of the key targets for gunmen and terrorist groups, because it is frequented by many Westerners.

Al-Shabab has threatened to carry out attacks in Nairobi.

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