Kenya: Security agencies foil 5 attacks since Westgate

Kenyan security agents have thwarted five terrorist attacks since the killing of 67 people by al Shabaab militia at Westgate Shopping Mall on September 21, 2013, the Star has established.

This comes as the country marks the second anniversary since the Westgate attack.

According to a compilation by security agencies, the attacks were thwarted owing to heightened security and monitoring, following the loss of territory in Somalia by al Shabaab.

The thwarted attacks include an attempt by two al Shabaab operatives to blow up an upmarket mall in Nairobi on March 14.

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MASTERMIND: Adan Garar. Photo/FILE

Two suspects were arrested and explosives capable of bringing down a five-storey building seized.

In another incident on April 11, security agents arrested two suspects with pistols and 16 bullets before they attacked a beach hotel in Diani, Kwale county.

On May 22, with the assistance of villagers in Yumbis, Garissa county, police thwarted yet another planned al Shabaab attack on the village.

On June 15, Kenya Defence Forces repulsed an al Shabaab attack on their Baure camp in Lamu during which a British-born Shabaab fighter was killed.

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ESCAPEE: Abdikadir Haret. Photo/FILE

Then on August 26, Kenyan security agents arrested six suspected al Shabaab fighters of Tanzanian origin and seized two rocket-propelled guns, several grenades and AK47 rifles in Garissa.

Prior to the Westgate attack, security agents had foiled several assaults, including the arrest of two Tunisians, Hamza Hersi and Bin Mohammed, and their Sudanese accomplice Idriss Ali.

An Al Shabaab operative was also arrested at the Nakuru Agricultural Society of Kenya Show with two hand grenades just before President Uhuru Kenyatta delivered his speech.

Intelligence officials have revealed that the Westgate attack was planned and executed by seven al Shabaab operatives.

Three of them, including the mastermind Adan Garar and his aides Abdullahi Ali and Abdikadir Haret, all from al Amniyat unit, sneaked out of the country only to brag later about the attack.

The four attackers killed included al Shabaab’s Jabha unit (frontline fighters) Mohammed Said, alias Omar Nabhan, who had lived in Kenya as a refugee and attended Gambela Primary School in Kakuma until 2010.

Others were Mohammed Dhuhullow, alias Abu Al Sudani, a Norwegian of Somalia origin, Hassan Turyare, alias Khatab Al Kene and Yahye Ahmed, alias Yahye Golis, an electronics trader who lived in Bullo Burde, Hiraan, Somalia.

star.co.ke 2015-09-19 11-58-19

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