25 June 2014

Kenya: 13 MRC Suspects Arrested Planning Attacks in Lamu

Photo: Norbert Allan/The Star
Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) members praying (file photo).

Nairobi — Thirteen suspected Mombasa Republican Council (MRC) members have been arrested while allegedly planning ethnic cleansing similar to the Mpeketoni attacks.

The Interior Ministry says the suspects were arrested in Kiunga, Lamu County earlier on Wednesday.

The arrest comes after 11 more people were killed in Witu near Mpeketoni on Monday, following last week's massacre of 60 people. Authorities said armed gunmen attacked villagers in Witu, leaving scores of people injured in Monday night's raid.

The attacks were carried out despite heavy deployment of security personnel in the coastal town of Lamu that has recently witnessed a wave of insecurity.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph ole Lenku says they have intensified security in various parts of the country following fears of more attacks fuelled by incitement.

The government has since linked the attacks to politics despite the Al-Shabaab terror group claiming responsibility for the Mpeketoni massacre.

President Uhuru Kenyatta said authorities in Lamu had been notified of impending politically motivated attacks but failed to take action.

He said those who did not heed intelligence warnings had been suspended and would face charges in court.

"It is now clear that intelligence on this attack was availed to the security officers in Mpeketoni. Unfortunately, the officers did not act accordingly. This negligence and abdication of duty and responsibility is unacceptable. Accordingly, all concerned officers have been suspended and will be charged immediately in a court of law," President Kenyatta had said.

He warned that the government would take action against any other officers who fail to perform their duties, as they abet commission of crimes in the country.

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