Kenya launches airstrikes on Islamic extremists in Somalia after massacre

Kenyan warplanes attack Shabab militant group in Somalia after terrorist group attacked college students

Kenya launched airstrikes against Islamic militants in Somalia following an extremist attack on a Kenyan college that killed 148 people, a military spokesman said Monday.

Warplanes attacked positions of the Shabab militant group on Sunday afternoon and early Monday morning, said Col. David Obonyo of the Kenyan military.

Shabab, which is based in Somalia, claimed responsibility for the college attack Thursday in the Kenyan town of Garissa. Four gunmen died in the assault.

The airstrikes occurred in the Gedo region of Somalia, Obonyo said.

"This is part of continuing operations, not just in response to Garissa," he said.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta had vowed harsh measures against Shabab following the slaughter at Garissa, which is near the border with Somalia. Kenya has troops in Somalia as part of an African Union force to attack Shabab and shore up the beleaguered Somali government. Kenya has carried out airstrikes before.

Shabab said it attacked students at Garissa University College as a reprisal for Kenya sending troops into Somalia.

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3:42 a.m.: This article has been updated throughout with additional background and information. 

This article was originally posted at 3:18 a.m.

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