Nightly News   |  September 25, 2013

FBI investigating Kenya mall attack, officials say

NBC News has learned that the terrorists stashed weapons inside the mall in advance of the attack, and had inside help getting into Kenya. NBC’s Ron Allen reports.

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>>> now to the ongoing story out of nairobi , the massacre at the shopping mall . there is dramatic new video as well from inside that complex including a parking structure -- three floors collapsed during the assault. incredible devastation there. with the bloodshed over, the work now begins to piece together what went on there and how members of this al shabaab terror group planned and executed their attack. ron allen has our report again tonight from tn kenya .

>> reporter: kenya is in mourning. family members come the nairobi morgue to identify bodies of loved ones. as kenya 's growing investigation into the mall attack gets help from around the world.

>> the u.s., israel, britain, germany, canada and other agencies including interpol.

>> reporter: officials tell nbc news the fbi was on the ground shortly after the attack began. and now has a significant presence here. how did the al shabaab terrorists pull off the attack? nbc news has learned they stashed weapons inside the mall in advance of the attack and have inside help. they have rehearsed the attack according to "new york times." new video from inside the mall shows the extent of the damage. deputy commander moses ambati who led a hostage rescue team said militants rigged the mall with i.e.d.s. a trained negotiator, he says the assault was so fierce there was no time to talk. it was one of his men who saved a terrified mother and her children who had played dead until help came. kenyan forces save ed hundreds, he told us.

>> it could have been a lot worse but it is a successful operation.

>> it's all right. successful.

>> reporter: among the survivors, americans ryan and amanda kol uh by in africa for a safari vacation. now safely back in texas they say apart from the attack they have good memories.

>> kenya is amazing. our whole trip until then was one of the highlights of our lives.

>> reporter: back in nairobi , forensic teams search for crews and victims, looking for bodies in the rubble. as kenya grieves and counts its losses. on allen, nbc news, nairobi .