Kenya vows to step up war against terrorism

14:27, March 31, 2010      

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The Kenyan government vowed Tuesday it would step up its counter terrorism measures in the country.

Internal Security Permanent Secretary Francis Kimemia said the East African nation has intensified the war against terrorism in the country, stressing that no particular community was being targeted in the war against the vice. "We have intensified a crackdown on terrorism and the borders are well secured. Our officers are out there to make the country safe," Kimemia told journalists after attending a regional forum in Nairobi.

His comments came after a series of arrests of foreign nationals on suspicion of terrorism. Since last week, the security forces in the country have arrested about nine foreigners over terror links.

The Kenya Somali border is particularly porous and the existence of insurgent groups with suspected links to al Qaida, poses a potential security risk to the country.

Kimemia vowed that the countrywide crackdown against terrorism will continue, and he, however, denied there is an influx of terrorists in the country. "It is not true that there is an influx of terrorists in the country. There have been isolated cases where refugees enter the country and they are profiled like what happened in Dobley (Kenya- Somalia border) and there is no influx at all," he said.

Last week, the Kenyan police freed an Australian terrorism suspect mistakenly believing he was just an illegal immigrant. .

Spokesman Eric Kiraithe has said Hussein Hashi Farah was handed to ordinary police at Busia, at the border between Kenya and Uganda rather than specialist officers because of "an oversight".

Farah apparently then reassured police he would appear in court for an immigration hearing, and was set free. He is wanted for allegedly planning an attack in Australia in 2009.

A group of ethnic Somalis were arrested in Melbourne last year amid reports they had links to the Islamist rebel group al-Shabaab and were planning attacks in Australia.

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