Kenya: Muslims displaced in wake of terror attack

Dozens of Muslim families in Mpeketoni, a coastal Kenyan town where more than 60 people have been killed in separate attacks this week, have fled following  threats and assaults from the Christian majority. "Mpeketoni is not safe for us," Ali Lali Uweso, the headmaster of primary school, told Anadolu Agency by phone.  "As we speak, we are travelling in a convoy of several vehicles from Mpeketoni with Swahili and other Muslim families heading to Mokowe Jetty to take a boat to the islands." The Swahili people are an ethnic group whose name is derived from the Arabic word meaning coastal. Local residents confirmed that a Swahili Muslim man in his 50s was beaten unconscious by youth armed with crude weapons who claimed to be avenging the victims of the recent attacks. At least nine were killed and a number of others wounded in the June 16 attacks in the usually quiet town near the Somali border. The previous evening, at least 53 were killed in armed attacks on a three hotels and a police station in the town. The attacks were reportedly claimed by the Somali rebel group al-Shabaab. (World Bulletin, Al Jazeera, June 18)

Ethiopian security forces two weeks earlier claimed to have foiled a plot by al-Shabaab to launch terrorist attacks in Addis Ababa. An anti-terror police unit said in a statement that a bomber had been arrested while trying to detonate his device. (World Bulletin, June 4) The Uganda Peoples Defense Forces has dispatched 1,440 soldiers to Somalia under the command of the African Union Somalia Mission (AMISOM). (World Bulletin, June 17)

  1. More deadly attacks in Kenya

    At least 22 were killed in attacks by gunmen in the towns of Hindi and Gamba on the Kenyan coast July 6. Local authorities said gunmen attacked residents randomly. Somalia's Shabab claimed responsibility for the attacks, but Kenyan officials blamed local "separatists." (AP)

  2. Reprisal attacks on Muslim clerics in Mombasa

    More than 21 Islamic clerics have been gunned down in Kenya’s southeastern port city of Mombasa over the past two years, according to the human rights group Haki Africa. All but one of them was linked by the government to terrorism and support for al-Shabab. The Kenyan government has strenuously denied allegations the security forces are involved in extra-judicial killings. (IRIN, July 28)