Suspects seized, security heightened after island attack

Tuesday, January 7th, 2020 00:00 |
Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i. Photo/PD/File

Security has been heightened across the country since the attack with at least five suspected terrorists arrested in separate incidents in the last 24 hours.

Yesterday morning, a male Somali-Canadian suspect was arrested in Eastleigh after he was found conducting surveillance at the Kenya Defence Forces, Moi Air Base. The suspect was handed over to a multi-agency team for grilling.

The arrest came just 12 hours after three other suspects were arrested after they tried to gain forcible entry into the Nanyuki-based British Army Camp. The suspects were not armed but the detectives said they could not rule out terror.

The suspects, who had earlier been captured on CCTV and their photos circulated,  were arrested by Nanyuki town chief and two police officers The suspects were traced to near Nanyuki police station.

Taking photos

Two other suspects, James Ikaba and his girlfriend Miriam Njoki were on Sunday arrested after they were found taking photos of the General Service Unit (GSU) Recce Company.

The two, in a vehicle registration number KCB 488X, sped from the scene and their vehicle was shot at. His vehicle was searched and the officers found seven rounds of live ammunition, minus a firearm.

The detectives went to his residence in Marurui and conducted a search and found a Ceska pistol, shotgun escort magnum, 111 rounds of ammunition, assorted foreign currency, fake Chinese currency amounting to Sh24.2 million, among other items.

Ikaba was handed over to the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit (ATPU) detectives in Nairobi.

Reports indicate that the terrorists are targeting soft targets like passengers in vehicles, security officers, vital installations, and even foreigners.

Other reports indicate there is growing support for Daesh, formerly referred to as the Islamic State of  Iraq and the Levany (ISIL), in Kenya.

Garissa, Lamu and Mandera have borne the brunt of the attacks due to their proximity to Somalia. The terrorists operate within the Boni Forest and along the border between Garissa county and Somalia.

Shooting, IEDs

The suspected methods of attack include shootings and bombings, improvised explosive devices (IEDs), car bombings and grenades.

The security agencies have also warned of possible kidnapping, especially targeting foreigners. On April 12 last year, two Cuban doctors were kidnapped in Mandera. Another kidnapping took place on November 20, 2018 in Chakama, Kilifi county where an Italian NGO worker was abducted.

Such kidnappings have also happened in Dadaab refugee camps.

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