American Missionaries Injured in Ugandan Blast

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By Aaron J. Leichman, Christian Post Reporter
July 12, 2010|11:59 pm

A group of American missionaries was among those injured in the bombings in Uganda Sunday night that left at least 74 dead, according to reports.

Prayers are presently being offered for the team of six from Christ Community United Methodist Church in Selinsgrove, Pa. – five of which sustained serious injuries that require surgery.

“Emily and Joanne Kerstetter should be at a trauma center in Johannesburg, South Africa, by 9 p.m. Monday night,” reported church members in their Uganda Mission blog.

Another member, Kris, meanwhile, is being treated by a doctor from Kenya.

“[The doctor] said Kris does not have a compound fracture but a broken leg with a very deep blast wound and shrapnel,” the church reported. “He has facial blast wounds with some burns and the doctor feels his eye will be ok but his eye is swollen shut with shrapnel around it. Thank God he wears glasses!”

“Pray that all members will receive the treatment that they need and fully recover,” the church wrote before concluding.

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According to reports, bombs exploded at two sites in Uganda's capital, Kampala, late Sunday as people watched the World Cup final on TV. One of the bombs went off at an Ethiopian restaurant. The second blast went off at a restaurant called the Kyadondo Rugby Club.

Kampala Police Chief Kale Kaihura said he believed that Somalia's most feared militia - al-Shabab, which has pledged loyalty to al-Qaida - could be behind the attacks.

Though an al-Shabab commander in Mogadishu refused to confirm or deny the group's role in the bombings, he told The Associated Press early Monday that he was happy with the attacks.

"Uganda is one of our enemies. Whatever makes them cry, makes us happy," Sheik reportedly said.

“May Allah's anger be upon those who are against us,” he added.

If al-Shabab was responsible for the bombings, it would be the first time the group has carried out attacks outside of Somalia.

On Sunday, White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said the United States was prepared to provide any necessary assistance to the Ugandan government.

"The president is deeply saddened by the loss of life resulting from these deplorable and cowardly attacks, and sends his condolences to the people of Uganda and the loved ones of those who have been killed or injured," Vietor said.

 

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