At least 12 Kenyan police officers were killed on Saturday while another escaped with serious injuries after a vehicle they were travelling in was hit by improvised explosive device (IED) in Wajir county along the border with Somalia.
A senior police officer said that suspected al-Shabab militants were believed to have crossed over from neighbouring Somalia. The incident took place between Riba and Konton villages in Wajir east, Xinhua news agency reported.
"A team of 13 administration police officers were attacked with IED between Riba and Konton and only one survived with serious injuries subject to confirmation of the number of death toll," said the police officer who declined to be identified.
The security officer said the administration police officers were allegedly conducting security surveillance along Kenya-Somalia border when the incident happened, two days after the militants stormed a local centre and abducted three police reservists in the same location.
Witnesses said the police officers were killed when their vehicle ran over the landmine and those who survived were pursued and shot dead. A police chopper has been sent to pick the only survivor, according to officials.
Meanwhile, the Al Qaeda allied terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attack in northeastern Kenya, saying their fighters seized the Konton village in the outskirts of Wajir town.