Kenya Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed told US PBS network that one of the militants was a British woman

A British woman is thought to be among militants who killed at least 62 people at a Kenyan shopping centre, the country’s foreign minister has said.

Amina Mohamed said the woman had “done this many times before” and “two or three” Americans were also attackers.

Earlier, Kenya’s interior minister said all of the militants were men, although some may have been dressed as women.

Six British nationals are confirmed dead in the attack on the Westgate centre in Nairobi.

The Foreign Office (FCO) said the next of kin of the six had been informed and were being offered consular support.

It also said it was aware of the comments by Kenya’s foreign minister, but officials have refused to speculate on the identity of any of the perpetrators.

An FCO spokeswoman said: “We continue to liaise very closely with the Kenyan authorities and to support their investigation into this attack.”

Asked about Ms Mohamed’s remarks at a press conference in Pakistan, Home Secretary Theresa May said: “I’m aware that there have been reports of a British woman being involved, but until we have seen the investigations completed it is not possible to give further details to confirm or deny that issue.”

Responsibility for the attack has been claimed by al-Shabab – an Islamist group based in neighbouring Somalia, which is part of the al-Qaeda network.

‘Animals’

Ms Mohamed’s comments have fuelled speculation about the possible involvement in the attack of British terror suspect Samantha Lewthwaite – the widow of 7 July suicide bomber Jermaine Lindsay.

A passport photo believed to be of Samantha Lewthwaite Kenyan police released a passport photo believed to be of Samantha Lewthwaite earlier this year

She is known to be in East Africa and is wanted by Kenyan police over alleged links to a terrorist cell that planned to bomb the country’s coast.

Ms Mohamed told the PBS NewsHour programme on Monday: “From the information that we have, two or three Americans [were involved] and I think, so far, I have heard of one Brit… a woman … and I think she has done this many times before.”

The Americans are believed to have been aged about 18 or 19, of Somali or Arab origin and lived in “Minnesota and one other place”, she said.

Kenyan security forces say they have now taken control of all floors of the shopping centre in Nairobi, although an explosion and gunfire was heard from there on Tuesday morning.

The official death toll stands at 62, with more than 170 injured.

A UK man, who lost his young daughter, told the Daily Telegraph she was killed by “animals” who were using “religion as an excuse”.

‘Bad man’

Louis Bawa, of Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, said he had spoken to his daughter Jennah, eight, and Kenyan-born wife Zahira on Friday but “didn’t get a chance to catch up with them” again.

He said they had gone on a regular Saturday shopping trip to the Westgate centre, but added: “This time they didn’t come home.”

Architect Ross Langdon, who had British-Australian citizenship, has also been named as one of the UK victims although the Foreign Office is still not confirming identities.

Mr Langdon’s company, Regional Associates, issued a tribute to him and said he had died alongside his pregnant partner, Elif Yavuz, a Dutch citizen.

According to the Sun newspaper, a four-year-old British boy, Elliott Prior, from Windsor, Berkshire, was among the survivors of the atrocity.

His mother Amber was reportedly shot in the leg, but was able to escape with Elliott and his sister Amelie, six, after the boy told one of the gunmen: “You’re a very bad man.”

British nationals concerned about friends or family can contact the Foreign Office on +44 (0)20 7008 0000.

BBC

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