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Kenya has closed several security posts along the Somalia border after recent Shabaab attacks in which six officers were killed and weapons and communications equipment were stolen. Police in Nairobi arrested over 300 suspected illegal aliens last night, mainly in the Eastleigh neighborhood; the area was targeted, police said, because it is where terrorists usually hide out.




Security forces arrested 21 refugees from the Hagadera camp as they headed towards Somalia to join Shabaab. A confidential security report estimates that over 300 Kenyan Shabaab operatives are currently in Kenya. The chairman of the National Security and Administration Committee blamed the intelligence gathering system for the fact that none of those responsible for the extrajudicial killing of nine Muslim preachers and two Christian pastors have been identified. Morten Storm, an alleged former informant for Danish intelligence and the CIA, claimed that wanted Shabaab terrorist Ikrima, a prime suspect in the Westgate Mall attacks, had known Anwar al Awlaki and handled foreign fighters for Shabaab.




Authorities charged four Somali men, Mohammed Ahmed Abdi, Liban Abdullah, Adan Adan, and Hussein Hassan, for supporting Shabaab's Westgate Mall terror attack. Abdi and Abdullah are accused of aiding Moahmmed Abdinur Said and Hassan Mohammed Dhohullow the day before the attack. Abdi also allegedly harbored another terrorist, Abdikadir Hared Mohammed a.k.a. Mohammed Hussein, at Salman Al Faris Madrassa in Nairobi's Eastleigh district on or before Oct. 7. Four accomplices are said to have died during the mall siege, in which some hostages were reportedly tortured. The prosecution asked for more time for investigation.




The Kenyan Defense Forces confirmed that its aerial strike on a Shabaab training camp in Somalia's Dinsoor region destroyed four technical vehicles and a weapons store; KDF also said over 300 Shabaab recruits are thought to have died in the assault. The Anglican archbishop for Kenya rejected calls from pastors for guns for their protection and for security at church functions.




Police said they are holding five suspects in the Westgate Mall attack, but maintain that only four gunmen carried out the siege; other authorities have said that number is too low. Two soldiers were court-martialed for looting during the siege. Kenyan forces arrested three Tanzanians in Somalia suspected of membership in Shabaab and deported them to Tanzania. Authorities arrested Tanzanian national Sheikh Ramadhan Jumal outside Mombasa's Masjid Musa mosque last week on suspicion of encouraging youth to join Shabaab; two days of rioting followed his arrest. Security has been stepped up at two Nairobi malls after text messages were sent warning of terror attacks.




The interior minister fired 15 immigration officers for endangering national security by issuing ID documents to illegal aliens. He said some refugees from neighboring unstable countries have planned terror attacks from Kenyan refugee camps.




Interior Cabinet Secretary Lenku said the forensic report on the Westgate Mall attack will be out soon. Christian leaders in Mombasa protested after pastors were killed in Mombasa and in Kilifi. The pastor of the Mombasa church, which is situated very close to the controversial Masjid Musa, had received death threats. Rioting over the killing of a Mombasa imam on Oct. 4 by unknown assailants led to the burning of a Salvation Army worship center in Majengo on Oct. 11.




Investigators recovered four AK-47s and a human skull from the Westgate Mall site. Newly released CCTV footage shows attackers using their cell phones during the siege. Police are said to be holding three prime suspects, who are to be arraigned next week; over 60 suspects have been arrested, interrogated, and released. The US donated bomb disposal equipment to the Criminal Investigations Department.




Nairobi's chief criminal investigator said so far none of the key suspects in the Westgate Mall attack have been apprehended. Detectives are also looking for at least eight suspects thought to have been indirectly involved in the attack; four were seen on CCTV footage from the mall. Security forces monitored two elite high schools outside Nairobi after a threat was made to target the schools during prayer time. The families of two Westgate Mall terror suspects blamed extremist clerics for their sons' decision to join Shabaab. Leaked intelligence reportedly said "thousands" of Kenyan youth from Mombasa have joined the terror group. A youth was killed and his siblings injured when a grenade they were playing with exploded in Mandera.




A Kenyan intelligence report describing a journal kept by wanted UK terrorist Samantha Lewthwaite states that the al Qaeda-affiliated Shabaab terror network extends to a large number of countries, including Somalia, Uganda, Burundi, Zambia, Tanzania, Mali, South Africa, Yemen, and Pakistan. Lewthwaite, who is said to be a "logistician" for Shabaab, remains at large. She is thought to be married to Fahmi Jamal Salim, another key operative in the group. Intelligence officials are said to be concerned that al Qaeda affiliates have gained access to Libyan chemical weapons, and that Shabaab may be planning chemical weapons attacks in Kenya.




Police are looking for a Somali resident now living in Norway who is suspected of planning the Westgate Mall attack; some of the planning is said to have taken place at Kenya's Dadaab refugee camp. Swaleh Abdalla Said appeared in court after being accused of involvement in planning the Westgate attack. A witness said Swaleh was recruited by Shabaab in 2004. Other suspects have also been arrested recently, including Shabaab member Said Nassir Haidar. So far none of the bodies of the attackers have been found in the rubble of the mall.




Police released photos of two suspects in the Westgate Mall attack, Abdikadir Haret Mohamed a.k.a. Mohamed Hussein, a Kenyan; and Adan Dheq a.k.a. Hussein Abdi Ali a.k.a. Abdulahi Dugon Subow, a Somali national. Rewards of Sh500,000 each were offered for information leading to the capture of the two men, who owned a car used by the attackers. Police also arrested a former wife of Abdikadir. Authorities are said to be planning to name other suspects also, including a woman. Kenyan intelligence has warned of a persistent al Qaeda threat.




The Kenyan military named four dead Westgate Mall attackers, including their al Qaeda-trained leader, Abu Baara al-Sudani. The three others are Omar Nabhan, a Kenyan Arab who had lived in Somalia; Khattab al-Kene, a Shabaab-linked Somali said to be "an associate of Ramzy from Mogadishu"; and a man identified only as Umayr. Kenyan authorities are said to be holding nine suspects and have said that five attackers were killed. Others may still be at large. Police searching for Shabaab militants raided a Somali-run hotel in Kitui town, but arrested no one. Police are said to be looking for a cleric, Sheikh Abubakar Shariff, a.k.a. Makaburi, suspected of supporting terrorism.




After a popular hardline Islamist cleric was shot and killed along with three companions in Mombasa last night, rioting Muslims clashed with police, burned a church, and blocked a main road into the city. Militant Islamist Sheikh Abubakar Shariff a.k.a. Makaburi, who is already facing terrorism charges, appeared quickly at the scene and denounced the killing as a government assassination, and claimed Muslims are now justified to disobey Kenyan laws. Two weeks after the Westgate Mall massacre, only three bodies have been recovered from the rubble, despite claims of more missing. Intelligence officials think at least two of the terrorists escaped during the siege.




Abu Sandheere, a Kenyan al Qaeda operative, is suspected to have planned the Westgate Mall assault, and is thought to have escaped into Somalia. A 20-member Shabaab assassination squad led by Salaad Hassan and Khadar Abdi Abubakar is thought to be at large in Kenya. The number of people missing from the siege has dropped from 61 to 39. The bodies of five terrorists are thought to be under the rubble of the collapsed mall, and no terrorists' bodies have been recovered. The interior minister admitted that some of the terrorists may have escaped. Investigators are looking for cars the terrorists reportedly used.




The government said it is "at war" with Shabaab, and tried to address reports that it had received intelligence warnings before the Westgate Mall massacre that Shabaab was likely to attack in Nairobi. Kenya called for the US to withdraw a travel advisory issued yesterday which warned that "the US government continues to receive information about potential terrorist threats aimed at US, Western and Kenyan interests in Kenya, including in the Nairobi area and in the coastal city of Mombasa."




Authorities are holding eight suspects in the Nairobi mall attack, and have released three others. Interpol has issued an arrest warrant for "White Widow" Samantha Lewthwaite, who is wanted by Kenya on terrorism charges from 2011. A witness to the attack said the terrorist assault team was directed by a female attacker. Prior to the assault, the attackers are said to have rented a shop from a Turkish man in the mall; the shop was reportedly used to store weapons.




Shabaab's emir threatened more attacks if Kenya does not withdraw its troops from Somalia. The death toll in the attack, already at 62, may rise by as many as 60 more as security forces and forensic experts continue to sweep the building. A British man of Somali origins was arrested at Nairobi airport on suspicion of links to the attack. US officials say Shabaab may have recruited Americans for the attack; officials also say some attackers may have escaped later dressed as civilians. British terrorist Jermaine Grant appeared in court on charges of possessing explosives in a flat he had shared in Mombasa with "White Widow" Samantha Lewthwaite. The US has agreed to Kenya's request to help investigate the Nairobi mall attack.




Authorities arrested "more than 10" suspects, including four at the airport, who are thought linked to the Shabaab assault on a Nairobi mall. The death toll was revised to at least 62; the military said all floors of the mall have been cleared, but there were also reports that some gunmen remained. A Shabaab commander said the assault was well organized. Kenyan authorities believe foreign fighters were part of the assault team. Wanted British terrorist Samantha Lewthwaite is suspected of involvement in the attack.




The death toll in the Shabaab attack on the Nairobi mall has risen to 68. Some 10 to 15 attackers are thought to be still holding hostages inside the mall as security forces surround the area. President Kenyatta said Kenya will not relent in the war on terror and also said Kenya's ethnic and cultural diversity is its strength. Shabaab resumed tweeting about the operation.


 
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