9 December 2013

Uganda: Police Warn of Terrorist Plot to Strike Ugandan Capital

Kampala — The Ugandan police on Monday issued a warning to the public, saying it had received information from "credible sources" that terrorists were planning to strike the capital, Kampala.

"Police last evening (Sunday) received information from credible sources of a plan by a group of people to unleash terror attacks in the city [on] Monday, 9 December", statement released by the spokesperson of the Ugandan police, Judith Nabakoba, said.

"The plan involves a group of thugs either on foot or boda-boda riders attacking and burning petrol stations and buildings in the city, especially business premises", the statement adds.

At the time of filing this report, no such terror attack had been reported in the Ugandan capital. The police said it was hunting the unnamed suspected terrorists and that it had put in place measures to stop possible attacks on petrol stations across the city.

"As police hunt down the thugs, and takes precautionary deployment in all petrol stations and in the city, especially in the central business districts, we appeal strongly to proprietors of public places, especially petrol stations and business premises, to be extra vigilant, particularly do not allow strangers near your premises", the statement said.

Security has also been stepped up at public institutions, including Makerere University, Uganda's oldest university, where security personnel were checking the cars and the bags of everyone entering the grounds.

Uganda has long said it is a target for terror attacks by the Somali militant group Al-Shabaab because of the country's involvement in the fight against the militant group in Somalia.

Uganda was the first country to send troops to Somalia under the banner of the African Union (AU) in the fight against the Al-Shabaab.

In July 2010, the militant group carried out a twin bomb attack in Kampala, killing 74 people who were attending a World Cup soccer game.

The warning is the third terror alert issued since September this year. In October, the police said it was hunting for a terrorist of German origin who had sneaked into the country. Within the same month the local US embassy in Kampala issued a warning, saying the country was at risk of being attacked by terrorists.

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