KDF warns of Shabaab threat at borders
Posted Saturday, March 10 2012 at 22:30
- Military says remnants of the militia group pose real threat and asks Kenyans to remain vigilant
The military has warned that there are remnants of Al-Shabaab on Kenyan borders and urged members of the public to remain vigilant.
Speaking at a media briefing on Saturday, Colonel Cyrus Oguna said the KDF are more than 100 km into Somalia and will continue with pacification operations.
The military spokesman said the Al-Shabaab remnants were out to cause disharmony between the forces and the local community, and he urged local residents to notify security agents about suspicious people in their villages and those visiting refugee camps.
Deputy Police Spokesman Charles Owino also asked Kenyans to be vigilant as the threat from the remnants was real, but he added that security agents were alert.
Col Oguna said that no KDF casualties had been reported in the past week. He said the Somali militants were at their weakest point as characterised by their uncoordinated fights.
He said on Monday in the northern sector at Gerille, KDF killed three Al-Shabaab militants and recovered five AK-47 rifles and communications equipment.
The following day, there was an air strike on Hayo where four technical vehicles, food rations and an ammunition depot were destroyed and several fighters were believed to have been killed.
The following day, within the southern border town of Diff along the Somalia-Kenya border, two Al-Shabaab members were killed and three AK-47 rifles and several rounds of ammunition recovered.
On Thursday the KDF conducted an ambush at Agilbax, a logistics depot south of Afmadow, and killed six militants and wounded several others. On the same day, six members of Al-Shabaab within Gerille area defected, handing over their six rifles and three Pulemyot Kalashnikov machine guns (PKM).
On Friday, the KDF conducted a cordon and search operation in the process of pacification where four militants were arrested and nine AK-47 rifles, 16 AK-47 magazines, 381 rounds of ammunition, three PKMs and two pieces of communications equipment recovered.
Col Oguna also said KDF soldiers currently serving in Somalia will be replaced in the next three months to allow them to be with their families. “However, within that period, we may have fresh troops injected into the mission area,” he said.
He added that serious infighting between Al-Shabaab’s Somali and foreign fighters was ongoing and that KDF has cut off the lucrative but illegal trade that brought counterfeit goods to Nairobi and the Dadaab region.