An Italian student volunteer was kidnapped and five people injured when gunmen attacked a shopping centre in south-eastern Kenya’s Kilifi County on Tuesday evening.
The gunmen raided Chakama — about 80 kilometres west of Malindi town— and started shooting in the air, before taking away the 23-year-old Italian woman.
“They then kidnapped the young Italian lady, who works as a volunteer in the area,” said a local who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.
She was working with Africa Milele Onlus, a non-governmental organisation whose mission is to raise literacy levels in Chakama.
Residents on Wednesday told the DailyNation that about 80 “heavily armed men” attacked the village in Galana Kulalu at around 8pm (1700GMT).
In a Twitter post, police said three children were among the wounded and had been admitted to Malindi Sub County Hospital.
Police were deployed to the scene after the attack, but by the time they arrived, sources told the Daily Nation, the gunmen had already fled across River Galana.
“The lady could be heard calling for help as they took her across the river,” the anonymous source, who witnessed the attack, said.
The police added that the reasons for the attack, or the identity of the attackers had not been established.