CONDEMNING the attack by militants in Nairobi this week, the Anglican Church of Kenya said that it had “left behind a trail of pain and untold suffering among innocent and hardworking citizens”.
At least 21 people, including one British person and one American, were killed when a hotel and office complex were attacked in the Kenyan capital on Tuesday. Al-Shabaab, the Somalia-based Islamist group, claimed responsibility.
The President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, said on Wednesday: “We will seek out every person who was involved in the funding, planning and execution of this heinous act. We will pursue them relentlessly wherever they will be until they are held accountable.”
The attack echoes a similar assault in 2013, when 67 people were killed during a siege in the Westgate shopping centre in the city (News, 27 September 2013).
In its statement, the Kenyan Church said: “We wish to convey a message of goodwill to all the citizens affected by the unfortunate incident.
“It is our sincere prayer that those who got hurt will recuperate quickly and the Lord will console those who lost their loved ones.
“It is sad that this tragic incident has left behind a trail of pain and untold suffering among innocent and hardworking citizens. Such an attack has, by no terms, any justifications in any humanity. We therefore condemn the attack, in the strongest terms possible, and urge the relevant authorities to ensure that all who may have in one way or another contributed to its organisation and execution are held to account.”
On Tuesday, in a tweet, the Archbishop of Canterbury said: “Our hearts go out this evening to those caught up in the Nairobi attack. We pray for victims and for families grieving or waiting for news. We thank God for the security forces. We pray for peace and calm to reign. May all in Kenya know the love and comfort of Jesus Christ.”
The Bishop of Guildford, the Rt Revd Andrew Watson, tweeted on Wednesday: “Good to be able to Skype daughter Hannah in Nairobi this evening, and moving to hear her accounts of people queuing up to give blood. ‘Goodness is stronger than evil, love is stronger than hate’.”
The Pope described the attack as a “senseless act of violence”. In a telegram, he said that he was “deeply saddened to learn of the loss of life and injury following the attack”.