33 people were injured in Kenya on Monday morning when an explosion rocked an area of small shops in downtown Nairobi. A witness on the scene claims she saw a ‘bearded man” who left behind a bag shortly before the explosion occurred.
At first police officials claims the explosion could have been caused by an electrical malfunction however the countries prime minister said shortly after the explosion that it was deliberate. The prime minister believes the detonation was carried out by an Islamist militant group in Somalia which had promised to carry out the type of attack observed.
Expressing his outrage Prime Minister Raila Odinga said:
“This is a heinous act. They want to scare us. But we will not be scared.”
While no deaths have been reported at this time the explosion was strong enough to peel back the front corner of a building’s aluminum roof, shatter windows and send various items flying through the air.
The witness Irene Wachira told the Associated Press that the man was “Arabic-looking” because of his light skin. She also claims the man walked to a nearby stall three times as if he was going to buy something before eventually leaving his bag behind.
Police originally said they were hesitant to blame an act of terrorism because of a lack of shrapnel however the national electricity agency eventually revealed that the building did not have a ground-mounted transformer that would cause such an explosion.
Police in the Kenyan city are still investigating the cause of the explosion and they now believe a non-conventional bomb may have been used.
The explosion occurred just blocks away from the 1998 U.S. Embassy explosion that was carried out by Al-Qaida.
Al-Shabab has promised large-scale attacks throughout Kenya after the country’s officials made the decision in October 2011 to send troops into Somalia to hunt down Islamist militants.
Five of the 33 injured people have been listed with serious injuries such as burns, fractures and deep lacerations.