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Source: The Star

AT least 20 people are feared dead after inter-clan fighting broke out in Mandera North’s Rhamu area on Sunday morning.

Heavily armed militiamen from the Degodia and Garre clans engaged in massive gun battles for seven hours before breaking off for lunch at about 1pm, according to residents and politicians.

The fighting is reported to have began as early as 5am, when gunfire broke out in the area after heavily armed men suspected to be from the Degodia militia attacked Rhamu in renewed clan fighting in Mandera County.

There were also reports of more casualties as security personnel were unable to access the town, which borders Ethiopia.

Isack Dahir Abdi, Ward representative for Rhamu, told the Star on the phone that the fight started at 5am went on for the better part of the day, with residents opting to stay indoors.

He said an unknown number of livestock was driven into the neighboring country of Ethiopia, adding that the attackers are believed to be coming from the Ethiopia side.

“People here are in constant fear, no shop was opened today. The situation is very bad as we speak. No families have cooked food for their children, we fear people might even starve to death,” Abdi said.

Guba MCA Abdullahi Hassan, who is in Nairobi, told the Star, “I hear that many people have died, but I don’t have the details. What I have heard is that it is between 20 and 30 people dead. We can’t give a figure right now, until everything is confirmed”.

The clan wars between the Degodia and Gare in recent months have left scores dead and hundreds injured.

Abdi said they suspect the latest attack was instigated by a former politician who recently visited the area.

County commissioner Alex ole Nkoyo and the Mandera North MP Adan Mohammed Nooru’s phones went unanswered all day.

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