President William Ruto has sent condolences to families of army officers who perished after a Kenya Airforce Huey helicopter crashed in Lamu county.
KDF said in a statement that the plane crashed on Monday night during air surveillance for the ongoing Operation Amani Boni, killing an unknown number of the crew members.
"Our condolences to the families and friends on the heartbreaking loss of our heroes in the Lamu helicopter crash. We honour their bravery in defending and protecting Kenya’s sovereignty," Ruto said in a statement Tuesday evening.
"Our prayers are with the Kenya Defence Forces and all those that have been affected by the tragedy."
KDF said in a statement that a board of inquiry has been constituted and dispatched to the scene to establish the cause of the crash.
"The leadership and entire KDF fraternity condole with the families of the crew," KDF Military Strategic Communications head Brigadier Zipporah Kioko said but did not reveal the number of officers who died in the crash.
Operation Amani Boni was launched in September 2015, a year after a terrorist attack left over 90 people dead in Mpeketoni and property worth millions of shillings destroyed on the night of June 15, 2014.
The operation covers the counties of Lamu, Tana River, Garissa and Kilifi with the aim of flushing out al Shabaab militants believed to be hiding inside the dense Boni Forest.
The chopper crash came just a day after KDF officers killed two al Shabaab militants in the Bodhei area within the expansive Boni forest.
On Thursday, September 14, top commanders visited troops stationed at Baure Forward Operating Base in Lamu county to assess the operational preparedness, welfare and morale of the troops.