Elliot Prior, from Windsor, Berkshire, told one of the terrorists that he was a ‘very bad man’ as he protected his mother, Amber, who had been shot in the leg, and six-year-old sister Amelie.
Incredibly, the attacker took pity on the family and bizarrely handed the children Mars bars before telling them ‘Please forgive me, we are not monsters.’
His story emerged as sporadic gunfire continued to ring out from inside the mall early today as Kenyan security forces battled Al Qaeda-linked terrorists into a fourth day.
Despite Kenyan police assurances that they had taken control of the building, a security expert with contacts inside the mall said at least 10 hostages were still being held by a band of attackers, possibly as many as 13.
Kenya’s foreign minister Amina Mohamed said ’two or three’ Americans and one British woman were among those who attacked the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi.
His mother, Amber, told of her family’s terrifying escape from Al Shabaab terrorists who butchered 62 people in the Nairobi shopping centre.
The film producer had been queuing to buy milk in Nairobi’s Westgate Shopping Centre when the militants struck.
She hid under a cold meat counter in the Nakumatt supermarket for an hour-and-a-half with her children beneath her before terrorists finally found them and shot her in the thigh.
Elliot’s uncle, Alex Coutts, told The Sun: ‘They had a lucky escape. The terrorists said if any of the kids were alive in the supermarket they could leave. ‘Amber made the decision to stand up and say “yes”.’
‘Then Elliot started arguing with them and called them bad men. He was very brave.’
After discovering the advertising producer was of French origin, the men began to plead with her and claimed that the Muslim faith ‘was not a bad one’.‘He told me I had to change my religion to Islam and said “do you forgive us? Do you forgive us?’, the mother told The Independent.‘Naturally, I was going to say whatever they wanted and they let us go’.
The fate of 20 others who had taken refuge under the meat counter is unknown.
The family’s escape is particularly astonishing in light of the indiscriminate slaughter of men, women and children throughout the mall after Al Shabaab launched their assault on Saturday.