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Deadly arsenal seized in Garissa raid

Police in Garissa County have arrested a terrorism suspect and seized a cache of firearms and explosives.

Police believe the weapons were to be used against vital government installations and religious institutions.

Addressing journalists in his office on Thursday, North Eastern Regional Coordinator Mohamud Saleh said the weapons were seized on Wednesday evening in a raid by Kenya Defence Forces and police on a house in Garissa’s livestock market area.

Mr Saleh said the officers found seven rocket-propelled grenades, three AK47 rifles, 227 rounds of ammunition, four magazines, 160mm hand grenades and timers to detonate improvised explosive devices. Also seized was fertiliser, which Mr Saleh said, is used to make explosives.

This comes just days after two pistols, seven grenades, 20 rounds of ammunition and 15 magazines, were impounded in Garissa Ndogo trading centre. Eight suspects were arrested.

“The dangerous criminals we arrested last week have given us all the information we required. After interrogations, we found these weapons,” he said.

Mr Saleh said police have foiled attacks by suspected Al Shaabab terrorists with the public’s help.

“What we are doing is intelligence-led policing, we get information, we analyse it and collate and take action,” he told journalists.

SUSPECTS ARRESTED

Mr Saleh praised the security agencies for arresting the suspects in good time. He said some of the weapons could have been destined for Nairobi and Mombasa.

He did not disclose the number of suspects arrested saying it could jeopardize ongoing investigations.

He noted that the suspects in custody could have been part of the group, which attacked Garissa University College in April which resulted into the death of 148 people.

“It’s our mandate to protect Kenyans. These weapons you see here are very dangerous, they were meant to harm Kenyans and their property,” he said.

Mr Saleh at the same time asked landlords to scrutinise their tenants so that they do harbour criminals and dangerous weapons.

He asked property owners to register their tenants with local chiefs, who in turn will work with the county commissioners and police to verify the details.

“All landlords in the region must provide details of their tenants to the chiefs in their locations and sub-locations within 14 days,” he said.