World News

    Kenyan Police Facing Off Gunmen Who Killed 39 in Nairobi Shopping Mall

    Authorities in Kenya's capital, Nairobi, are still working early Sunday to apprehend gunmen who killed 39 people and wounded more than 150 others in a brazen attack on a busy shopping mall.

    Officials say security forces have contained the attackers in one location inside Nairobi's Westgate Mall, where they have been holed up since Saturday. Kenya's National Disaster Operation Centre said an unknown number of hostages are still inside and cannot get to an exit.

    The Somali terrorist group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it is retaliation for Kenya's military intervention in Somalia. An al-Shabab spokesman said in an audio message, "Either leave our country or live with constant attacks."

    Kenyan forces entered Somalia two years ago to fight al-Shabab militants who had often crossed the border to stage attacks.



    The U.N. Security Council and Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon strongly condemned the attack. Mr. Ban called it a "premeditated" and "totally reprehensible" act targeting defenseless civilians.

    Witnesses said the gunmen wore masks and tossed hand grenades at the Westgate Mall during busy shopping hours. Children were among the wounded.

    One survivor who had been trapped inside the mall for several hours said he heard leaders of the attack speaking in a language he did not understand.

    VOA's reporter in Nairobi says there are concerns that some of the gunmen might have escaped immediately after the attack.

    Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta sought to reassure shaken Kenyans in an address to the nation just hours after the attack. The president condemned what he called the cowardly act and praised Kenyans for their solidarity in the face of the terrorist threat.



    "Terrorism in and of itself is the philosophy of cowards. The way we lead our lives in freedom, unity and consideration for each other represents our victory over those who wish us ill."



    President Kenyatta vowed that the perpetrators will be caught and dealt with. He said the government stands ready to defend the country from within and from outside.

    Canada and France each say two of their citizens were killed. The United States says no Americans were killed, but that some have been injured. Secretary of State John Kerry condemned the attack and said the United States has offered Kenya's government its full support to help bring the perpetrators of the attack to justice.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora