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Eight criminals killed as Kenya intensifies crackdown on crime
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08:25, July 04, 2007

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Kenyan police on Tuesday shot dead eight suspected criminals in three separate incidents in Nairobi as authorities intensify their crackdown on criminals across the East African nation.

Police spokesman Eric Kiraithe said four of the armed gangsters were shot dead at Nairobi's residential Kawangware estate when they engaged police in a shootout.

Kiraithe said an AK-47 rifle, a pistol and several rounds of ammunition were recovered during the shootout with the criminals.

He said two other criminals were killed in Lavington, an up market residential area in Nairobi when police on patrol intercepted seven suspected robbers who were in two separate cars.

"Two other suspected robbers were shot and killed in other residential estates areas in Gachie and Kasarani -- as they allegedly attempted to steal from motorists," he said.

The shootout comes on the third day of the month as police intensify their war on organized gangs with the recent killing of seven suspected Mungiki sect members in Murang'a in central Kenya on Sunday.

The latest killings comes as statistics released by police indicate that 3,379 Mungiki sect members have been arrested and charged with various offenses across the country since the beginning of this year.

Whereas there were 5,029 crime incidents in May, 4,410 cases were recorded last month and police attributed the reduction to crackdown on the Mungiki sect and other organized gangs.

Police recovered eight firearms and 74 rounds of ammunition in Central Province while 28 others were recovered in Nairobi in the month of June.

"The war against criminals has been intensified and police are deploying all the powers, privileges and immunities bestowed upon them by the law to ensure that all criminal activities are apprehended," Kiraithe said.

The Kenyan government has promised to crack down on the flow ofillegal arms into urban areas and the people using them.

The government says a flood of weapons into Kenya from neighboring Somalia is partly responsible for the recent surge of violent crime, particularly in the capital Nairobi.

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki has expressed concern about the rise in violent crime, especially in and around the capital, where even diplomats and foreigners have been targeted along with many Kenyans.

Source: Xinhua

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