Armed herdsmen in Kenya’s drought-stricken Laikipia region, have torched a luxury lodge owned by renowned Italian-born conservationist and author Kuki Gallman, in the latest violence to hit the area.

The attack on the Mukutan retreat followed a military operation to restore law and order.

Kenya’s The Star newspaper reports that seven out of 30 tourism lodges in Laikipia have closed since Christmas due to violent attacks.

Tristan Voorspuy, an ex-British army officer, who owned a lodge in the region, was killed last month as he inspected his property.

Thousands have also been displaced and about 30 people have been killed in the ongoing violence.

The insecurity in the region has been blamed on the ongoing drought that has forced herders to invade private farms to find pasture for their animals.

Some analysts, however, say that the violence is politically instigated.