Children watch as members of the Kenya Defence Forces attend prayers to pay respects to the Kenyan soldiers serving in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), who were killed in El Adde during an attack, at a memorial mass at the Moi Barracks in Eldoret, January 27, 2016. Photo/REUTERS
KDF has denied the Somalia President’s report that 180-200 Kenyan troops were killed in the attack in El Adde, Somalia on January 15.
The country’s President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud was quoted by the BBC as saying it was difficult to lose that number of soldier in a single day.
KDF spokesman David Obonyo told the Star on phone on Thursday that the matter of the number of casualties in the ambush by al Shabaab should not be trivialised
“I have never talked to any media house about the death toll. I dissociate myself from the utterances made. Everybody is affected by this,” Obonyo said.
“The number the Somalia president quoted is way beyond a company size.”
Mohamoud gave the figures during an interview on Somali Cable TV, concerning his recent visit to Kenya soon after an attack on Lido beach attack in Mogadishu.
A company is a military unit led by a Major or Captain, comprising three platoons each commanded by a Lieutenant with a total number of between 80 and 250.
Sixty three soldiers were feared dead following the attack on a remote African Union base. But the terror group revised the number up to 100 and said it had captured others , whose number it did not specify.
The Kenya Defence Forces has not released official details of the attack, but several wounded ones returned to Kenyans while some who were killed have been buried.
President Uhuru Kenyatta asked the public to allow KDF to carry out its duties and said the nation will join the army in celebrating the heroes.