Nairobi: Muslim passengers on a bus attacked by extremist militants in Kenya would not split into a group separate from Christian passengers, according to eyewitnesses, a move that a local governor believes saved lives, according to media reports.
The bus was on its way from Nairobi to Mandera on Monday when the attack occurred in the village of El Wak on the Somali border.
The gunmen ordered everyone off the bus, but the passengers told them they wanted to be killed together or left alone.
“The locals showed a sense of patriotism and belongingness to each other,” Mandera governor Ali Roba told the Kenyan paper Daily Nation
Al-Shabab group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
The passengers on the bus showed great bravery, but there was another quality revealed by their surprising decision to stand up to the gunmen: Frustration.
An employee of the bus company, who had spoken to the driver involved in the attack, confirmed to the BBC that Muslims had refused to be separated from their fellow Christian passengers.
One of the victims was shot dead after trying to run away from the militants after passengers had been forced off the bus, the same employee told the BBC’s reporter in Nairobi.