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'Coordinated' attack included suicide bombing in hotel

Tuesday January 15 2019

DusitD2 hotel

Police officers help people to escape after a bomb blast at DusitD2 hotel in Nairobi, Kenya, on January 15, 2019. PHOTO | KABIR DHANJI | AFP 

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An attack Tuesday on an upmarket suburb of Nairobi was a "co-ordinated" operation that included a suicide bombing in the foyer of a luxury hotel, Kenyan police chief Joseph Boinnet said.

"We can now confirm that this criminal activity commenced at about three o'clock in a coordinated fashion and began at I&M Bank with an explosion that targeted three vehicles in the parking lot, and a suicide explosion in the foyer of Dusit hotel," he said in a statement on television.

He said "a number of guests suffered serious injuries" but did not give a figure for any fatalities.

Boinnet said security forces had contained six of the seven floors of the hotel and were also working to secure "remaining outbuildings in the complex".

"Our main is search and rescue as well as neutralisation of the criminal elements."

Gunfire was still ringing out sporadically beyond nightfall, almost six hours into the attack.