10 people were killed in Kom, Isiolo County after a deadly gun battle ensued between herders competing for grazing land, heightening security concerns in the volatile Northern Kenya region.
The Sunday morning clash pitted armed cattle herders from Isiolo against those from Samburu.
Pastoralists from Samburu reportedly encroached into grazing fields that were fiercely guarded by the Isiolo group, prompting the fierce encounter.
Confirming the incident, Isiolo County Police Commander said that "members from the two communities fought over access to grazing fields along the two county borders," adding that extra police and paramilitary forces had been sent to Kom to restore order in the area.
“Ten bodies have been recovered from the scene. Scores of people sustained gunshot wounds,” clarified Ontita.
Isiolo County Deputy Commissioner Julius Maiyo, however, expressed fear that the actual number of fatalities could increase as they had not confirmed the actual number of casualties due to lack of clear communication with security personnel on the scene.
Mr Maiyo also said that they suspected animals were stolen during the clash.
The ravaging drought experienced in parts of the country, particularly Northern Kenya, has heightened competition for scarce grazing areas and watering holes forcing herders to resort to illegal grazing.
There have been other sporadic attacks in the country with clashes witnessed in Laikipia, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet and West Pokot areas, claiming several lives.
On Friday, President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered for the deployment of the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) to the volatile North Rift region to stem the deadly string of attacks witnessed in the region.