Kenyan official: Troops caused mall collapse

  • A Kenyan Para military soldier stops a vehicle to check, after security personnel opened part of  the road leading to the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

    A Kenyan Para military soldier stops a vehicle to check, after security personnel opened part of the road leading to the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

  • A man sits at a table with a photo of  Mbugua Mwangi, at left and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito, in photo at right, during their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    A man sits at a table with a photo of Mbugua Mwangi, at left and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito, in photo at right, during their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • Kenya police officers guard the Nakumatt Ukay Centre, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013.  Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

    Kenya police officers guard the Nakumatt Ukay Centre, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

  • Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute  to his nephew  Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito  at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute to his nephew Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute to his nephew Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito  at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute to his nephew Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • Kenyan Paramilitary soldiers guard the road after security personnel opened part of the road near the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday.  (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

    Kenyan Paramilitary soldiers guard the road after security personnel opened part of the road near the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

  • Kenya Para Military soldiers patrol the area,  near the Westgate Mall, n Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013.  Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

    Kenya Para Military soldiers patrol the area, near the Westgate Mall, n Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)

  • Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral servic,  in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral servic, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • This photo released by the Kenya Presidency shows the collapsed upper car park of the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013. Working near bodies crushed by rubble in a bullet-scarred, scorched mall, FBI agents continued fingerprint, DNA and ballistic analysis to help determine the identities and nationalities of victims and al-Shabab gunmen who attacked the shopping center, killing more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Kenya Presidency)

    This photo released by the Kenya Presidency shows the collapsed upper car park of the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013. Working near bodies crushed by rubble in a bullet-scarred, scorched mall, FBI agents continued fingerprint, DNA and ballistic analysis to help determine the identities and nationalities of victims and al-Shabab gunmen who attacked the shopping center, killing more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Kenya Presidency)

  • Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • A crowd of mourners gather for the burial ceremony of Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew Mbugua Mwangi and Mwangi's fiancee Rosemary Wahito, who were both killed in the Westgate Mall terrorist attack, at their joint burial in the village of Ichawara, Kenya Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who led the attack at a Nairobi mall that killed at least 67 people, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

    A crowd of mourners gather for the burial ceremony of Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew Mbugua Mwangi and Mwangi's fiancee Rosemary Wahito, who were both killed in the Westgate Mall terrorist attack, at their joint burial in the village of Ichawara, Kenya Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who led the attack at a Nairobi mall that killed at least 67 people, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

  • A Kenyan Para military soldier stops a vehicle to check, after security personnel opened part of  the road leading to the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
  • A man sits at a table with a photo of  Mbugua Mwangi, at left and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito, in photo at right, during their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
  • Kenya police officers guard the Nakumatt Ukay Centre, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013.  Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
  • Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute  to his nephew  Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito  at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
  • Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata pays tribute to his nephew Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito  at their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi and Wahito died in the  the Westgate Mall attack. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
  • Kenyan Paramilitary soldiers guard the road after security personnel opened part of the road near the Westgate Mall, in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday.  (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
  • Kenya Para Military soldiers patrol the area,  near the Westgate Mall, n Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013.  Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who killed at least 67 people in an attack Saturday at Nairobi’s Westgate Mall, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
  • Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral servic,  in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
  • This photo released by the Kenya Presidency shows the collapsed upper car park of the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013. Working near bodies crushed by rubble in a bullet-scarred, scorched mall, FBI agents continued fingerprint, DNA and ballistic analysis to help determine the identities and nationalities of victims and al-Shabab gunmen who attacked the shopping center, killing more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Kenya Presidency)
  • Friends and relatives of Mbugua Mwangi and his fiancee Rosemary Wahito attend their funeral service in Nairobi, Kenya, Friday Sept. 27, 2013. Mwangi, who is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew, and Wahito died in the Westgate Mall attack that killed more than 60 people. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
  • A crowd of mourners gather for the burial ceremony of Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta's nephew Mbugua Mwangi and Mwangi's fiancee Rosemary Wahito, who were both killed in the Westgate Mall terrorist attack, at their joint burial in the village of Ichawara, Kenya Friday, Sept. 27, 2013. Investigators have recovered a vehicle believed to have been used by the terrorists who led the attack at a Nairobi mall that killed at least 67 people, a top Kenyan government official said Friday. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

NAIROBI, Kenya — Kenya’s military caused the collapse of three floors of the Westgate Mall in the deadly terrorist siege, a top-ranking official disclosed Friday, while the government urged patience with the pace of an investigation that has left key questions unanswered.

Seven days after 67 people were killed in the attack on the upscale shopping center, there is still no clear word on the fate of dozens who have been reported missing and no details on the terrorists who carried it out.

The account of the roof collapse raises the possibility that the military may have caused the death of hostages in its rescue attempt. An undisclosed number of people are feared to be buried in the rubble.

The official said autopsies will be conducted on any bodies found to determine the cause of death — from the militants or the structural collapse. The high-ranking government official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to divulge sensitive information.

The official also confirmed that Kenyan troops fired rocket-propelled grenades inside the mall, but would not say what caused the floors to collapse, if the action was intentional, or if it was an accident.

The account at least partially backs up information given to AP on Wednesday by another official who said RPGs fired by soldiers created a gaping hole in the mall’s roof and caused the floors to collapse.

Four huge explosions had rocked the mall Monday and dark smoke poured out — the likely time that the floors collapsed.

A soldier who was returning from the mall Tuesday while carrying a rocket launcher told the AP reporter that he had fired it inside.

There are no comments yet. Be the first!
Post a Comment

You must be registered to comment on stories. Click here to register.