Kenyan Police Arrest Three Al Shabaab Suspects
Kenya Police have arrested three Al shabaab suspects in Nyeri County and put key installations in Mt Kenya under surveillance.
Two institutions in Nyeri, one in Meru County and several roads are under 24-hour radar. Two of the suspects, according to Nyeri County criminal investigations officer Charles Mutua, were arrested in Othaya.
Detectives had been pursuing the two men on suspicion of being involved in robberies.
The officers said they found the pair with communication gadgets and items associated with al-Shabaab terrorists. “Our investigations link them to terrorism,” Mr Mutua told the Nation.
They were later handed over to the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit.
A third man was picked up from Majengo slum by military intelligence officers. He had reportedly been on the radar of the military after sneaking into the country from Somalia several months ago.
At the same time, police have launched investigations following reports of a planned attack at the Kenya Medical Training College in Nyeri town during the weekend.
“The report came from students who said they had been warned of the attack by a man. We cannot take such claims lightly,” Mr Mutua said.
Initial reports showed that the county hospital would also be attacked. Students and staff from the college were questioned. No arrests have been made so far.
Eastern Regional police boss Moses Ombati said security agents were aware that terrorists could target Kinoru Stadium in Meru, which will host Madaraka Day celebrations.
He said crowded places may be easy targets and urged residents to avoid them.
Central Regional Coordinator Wilson Njega said hotels will be required to disclose visitor records to police upon demand.
“Some hotels do not keep such information. We must know your visitors and where they come from,” Mr Njega said during the regional disciplined forces mass in Nyeri on Sunday.
Police have identified Majengo and Kangemi estates in Nyeri town as possible hideouts for terrorists.
Top security officers said they are monitoring individuals suspected of radicalising and encouraging young people to join terrorist organisations.
In February, a former National Youth Service trainee from Kirinyaga was reportedly arrested while attempting to sneak into Somalia.
According to police, 29-year-old Stephen Wachira Ngariko was arrested by Somali security officers alongside two Tanzanians in Dhobley.
Wachira’s relatives in Kanjuu village, Gichugu Constituency said they learnt of his arrest on social media but have not heard from him or the government.
Security has been heightened and mop-ups increased in counties on the northern corridor.
Impromptu searches of vehicles on the Nairobi-Isiolo road have increased.
Meru, Isiolo, Marsabit, Laikipia, Mandera, Wajir, Nyeri, Kirinyaga and Murang’a counties are believed to be the main terrorist transit routes.
They usually sneak into the country through the Kenya-Somalia boarder via Mandera or Wajir.