Interpol issues alert for 'White Widow' stemming from 2011 Kenyan incident
September 27, 2013 -- Updated 0300 GMT (1100 HKT)
- NEW: Witnesses say a woman was among the Kenya mall attackers
- Interpol asks for help finding Samantha Lewthwaite, dubbed the "White Widow"
- Interpol says the notice relates to 2011 explosives charges
- Witnesses say they saw an unidentified woman among the Nairobi attackers
(CNN) -- Interpol said Thursday it issued a "red notice" for Samantha Lewthwaite, the so-called "White Widow," at the request of Kenyan authorities, but the international police agency added that the notice dealt with a 2011 incident.
Reports that a white woman was among the terrorists who stormed a mall in Nairobi last weekend have prompted a slew of media speculation about Lewthwaite, a British woman whose husband was one of the suicide bombers in the 2005 London terror attacks.
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A woman shouts during a special prayer at the Legio Maria African Mission church in Nairobi, Kenya, on Sunday, September 29, for the victims of the Westgate Shopping Mall shooting.
Photos: Kenya mourns mall shooting victims
FBI seeks access to Kenya attack site
Interpol issues alert for 'White Widow'
Aftermath of the Nairobi mall seige
Known as the "White Widow," Lewthwaite, 29, has been wanted by international counterterrorism officials since authorities found bomb-making materials in her Mombasa, Kenya, apartment in 2011. She vanished shortly before a raid.
The red notice is for charges related to the explosives, not the Westgate Mall attack, Interpol said.
Red notices issued by Interpol alert law enforcement around the world that a person is wanted, but they are not international arrest warrants.
"By requesting an Interpol Red Notice, Kenya has activated a global 'tripwire' for this fugitive," said Interpol Secretary General Ronald K. Noble.
"Through the Interpol Red Notice, Kenyan authorities have ensured that all 190 member countries are aware of the danger posed by this woman, not just across the region but also worldwide," he said.
Witnesses said they saw a female militant inside the mall during the attack.
And a senior Kenyan official confirmed Tuesday that a woman was involved. Yet another official said Wednesday that authorities can't say much about who the woman was or what she was doing.
Al-Shabaab gunmen stormed the Westgate mall Saturday.
At least 67 people were killed and as many as 63 people are still unaccounted for.
READ: Questions linger after Kenya mall attack
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Kenya mall attack
October 17, 2013 -- Updated 1355 GMT (2155 HKT)
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October 22, 2013 -- Updated 1132 GMT (1932 HKT)
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September 27, 2013 -- Updated 1940 GMT (0340 HKT)
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September 29, 2013 -- Updated 1701 GMT (0101 HKT)
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September 24, 2013 -- Updated 2058 GMT (0458 HKT)
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September 27, 2013 -- Updated 2128 GMT (0528 HKT)
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Photos from the attack as it happened.
September 24, 2013 -- Updated 1753 GMT (0153 HKT)
A safe distance from Nairobi's Westgate Mall, several Kenyans stare through a stand of trees at the site of one of the nation's worst terrorist attacks.
September 26, 2013 -- Updated 1459 GMT (2259 HKT)
British-born Samantha Lewthwaite was once seen as a kind of victim of the July 2005 London terror attacks -- the pregnant wife of one of the suicide bombers.
September 26, 2013 -- Updated 0222 GMT (1022 HKT)
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September 23, 2013 -- Updated 1440 GMT (2240 HKT)
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What the mall looked like before the attack.
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