Top Al Shabaab terrorist seeks refuge in Kenya

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2020 00:00 | By
Khalif Abdinoor Mohamed at Anti-Terrorism Police Unit in Mandera when he surrendered. Photo/Courtesy

An Al Shabaab terrorist who participated in the deadly El Adde attack where more than 150 Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) officers lost their lives , surrendered to Kenyan authorities yesterday.  

Khalif Abdinoor Mohamed who joined the militia group which has links with Al Qaeda terror group, has been working with the Somalia based Al Shabaab group since 2013.  

Detectives attached to the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit  in Mandera, were last night interrogating the suspect because they are yet to know why he surrendered.  

By yesterday evening, plans were underway to transport the suspect to Nairobi, where he will be further interrogated on his role in the militant group’s activities. 

In a report, police said that Mohamed communicated with the Burahale Police Station police boss, who facilitated his travel to Mandera County, where he surrendered to the authorities. 

Kenyan troops

“He ran away from Al Shabaab on August 30, 2020 at around 6pm. At 9pm when he reached Borehole 11, he was able to communicate with the OCPD Burahale who facilitated his movement,” a report seen by People Daily  read in part. 

The report also revealed that the fighter surrendered “an AK47 Butt Number 20, three magazines with 92 rounds of ammunition.” 

A band of about 300 militants staged a dawn attack on the Kenyan military camp at El Adde in Somalia on January 15, 2016, killing over 150 Kenyan troops. 

The attack was preceded by a suicide bomber who detonated his explosive laden-armoured personell carrier  to the front gate of the Kenyan military base which hosted Kenyan troops from the 9th and 5th Kenya Rifles.  

The Kenyans were part of the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) with the sole purpose of annihilating the Al Shabaab and restoring peace in the war-torn country. 

The blast from the truck was so huge that it destroyed everything within a radius of about 50 metres. It ignited fuel trucks and caused explosives to go off in camp. 

Yesterday, detectives said that the fighter was born in Bura at the Kenyan- Somalia border in a family of eight. His mother died a few years ago.

Bloody operations

Mohamed told the police that he trained with the militant group at Saakow at the Saretha Kulmiye Training school in Somalia.

He also said that he went through a nine months extensive training in “Buale where he received GPS training, how to use Motorola and how to carry out recce on camps and conduct assassinations.” 

The fighter is also believed to have been part of several bloody operations conducted in the past in Mogadishu and Baydhabo within Somalia. 

He was also among the Alshabab fighters who were deployed along the Kenya- Somalia border in Elram and Khorof Harar where a mast was brought down recently.  

It is believed that Mohamed is among the jihadists who have been carrying out a series of attacks along the Kenyan-Somalia border where several Safaricom masts have been brought down with the aim of interfering with communication. 

“They operate in small groups of twelve that were part of a larger group of between 30-36 operatives.

They always spend only three nights in one location before moving to another area,” the report further read. 

The fighters also use motorbikes to access difficult terrain and deliver water and ration to their colleagues. 

According to Mohamed, the fighters only use hand-held Motorola for communicating while combat radios are only available in the militant group’s headquarters at Kukumo, Somalia. 

Vital information

He also revealed that the group has two technicians who are tasked with ensuring that the machines are well maintained. 

During interrogation, Mohamed told detectives that militants were planning a major attack on Elram Camp in Mandera county. 

Police believe that he is a man of interest and that he holds vital information that will assist in containing the terror activities in Northern Kenya. The El Adde raid is one of the worst attacks on Kenyan troops.

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