Uganda says seven suspects killed during probe of last week’s Kampala blasts
By Elias Biryabarema
KAMPALA (Reuters) – Uganda said on Monday that seven suspects had been killed and 106 people detained during operations by the security services linked to three suicide bombings in the capital Kampala last week.
Islamic State (IS), which is allied with an anti-Uganda rebel group – Allied Democratic Forces (ADF)- claimed responsibility for the Nov. 16 attack, which killed seven people, including the three bombers, and injured dozens more. One police officer was among the 4 others killed and 27 out 37 wounded were also police officers.
“To disrupt and dismantle acts of domestic terrorism, we have intensified operations. Since these operations began, a total of 106 suspects have been arrested,” police spokesperson Fred Enanga said in a statement posted on Facebook.
Police did not provide details on how the seven suspects were killed.
In last week’s attack, a suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance of a police station in the centre of Kampala. Three minutes later two other suicide bombers exploded along a road that leads to the parliament.
The explosions set vehicles alight, and sent glass shards flying and panicked officers and workers fleeing multi-storied buildings.
Enanga said those detained “included those who were involved in terrorist financing and persons who were involved in mobilisation and incitement of vulnerable Ugandans into the ranks of ADF.”
“We are actively monitoring all spaces in homes, places of worship, which are acting as domains for recruitment and as collection centres, for children who are introduced to ideological messages and beliefs,” Enanga said.
A security raid on a suspected radicalisation centre in central Uganda had found 22 young people who security personnel suspects were being prepared for recruitment into ADF, he added.
The ADF was founded by Ugandan Muslims in 1990s and initially waged a war against the Ugandan government from bases in the country’s west.
They were eventually routed and fled into eastern Congo where they have been operating since, with the U.N. blaming them for thousands of civilian deaths.
(Reporting by Elias Biryabarema in Kampala; Editing by George Obulutsa and Grant McCool)