At the end of the four-day siege, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta reitrerated reports suggesting that a British woman and two or three American citizens may have been involved in the attack. The report said that American security officials were waiting for the surveillance camera footage and DNA tests so that they could confirm the identity of the terrorists.
The NYT report [read here] suggested that the militants must have had a back office in Kenya, a safe house to finalise their plot and store their guns. According to witnesses, several militants had toted G3 assault rifles, used by the Kenyan security services. This means that the militants may have acquired their weapons from corrupt Kenyan officers, who are known to sell or rent out their guns and charge as little as a few dollars an hour.
The report quotes security officials saying that belt-fed machines guns, called crew-served weapons requiring more than one person to operate it or carry it would have been stashed away inside the mall beforehand.
Militants possessed rifle used by the Kenyan security services
Army personnel were taken aback by these crew served weapons. The report also suggests that though it is uncertain to determine the number of attackers who stormed in the mall, there is a possibility that some fighters may have slipped out of the mall as civilians. At least one terrorist had packed a spare set of clothes, the NYT report said.
Officials said that the attackers were not interested in taking hostages. "They only wanted to kill. We wanted to negotiate but they didnt even respond," the report quoted an unnamed official.
The attack on the Westgate Mall lasted for four days as the death toll reached 72, while officials say that many bodies, that are still trapped in the mall, are unaccounted for and the toll may rise up drastically.
But the militant group Al-Shabab claimed that over 120 civilians were dead in the siege.