(COMPASSDIRECT) — Attackers with guns and hand-grenades killed at least 17 people and wounded scores more during worship services at two churches Sunday in Kenya.
Three of those killed were children. Two were police officers standing guard over one of the churches.
Both attacks occurred in Garissa, a provincial capital about 120 miles west of the Somalia border. Suspicion for the attacks immediately fell upon al Shabaab, a Somalia-based militant group that western governments say has links to al-Qaida, but authorities have not officially named any suspects.
Advertisement - story continues below
The first of the attacks began at about 10:15 a.m. at the Africa Inland Church, where Christian worshippers were attending Sunday services. Published news reports differ on the specifics, but between two and four men approached the church, and shot the two police officers. The attackers took the officers’ guns, and two grenades were thrown into the church. Reports differ on whether either grenade detonated, but they agree that gunmen entered the church and began to fire.