Al-Shabaab ‘setting up fresh units’

Al-Shabaab militants are coming to Kenya to set up new terror networks, a United Nations report says.

The report by Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea links them to Al-Hijra— an organisation it says changed name from Muslim Youth Centre (MYC).

MYC was associated with slain Muslim cleric Aboud Rogo who was shot dead in Mombasa in August last year.

“Al-Hijra is striving to regain the initiative, in part through its fighters in Somalia returning to conduct new and more complex operations, and through strengthening its ties to other groups in the region,” the report dated July 12 says.

Faults Kenya

This is the document that also faults Kenya Defence Forces’ Operation Linda Nchi in Somalia, accusing the troops of allowing illegal export of charcoal. Kenya has denied the claims.

It explains that extremists in Kenya are seeking to form new local networks because the military operations in Somalia have weakened Al-Shabaab.

Besides Sheikh Rogo’s death, active Al-Hijra members have disappeared, according to the report. “Al-Hijra members were plagued by unexplained killings, disappearances, continuous “catch and release” arrest raids and operational disruptions under the “Al-Shabaab/East Africa Al-Qaeda Disruption Initiative,” it says.

The report names Sylvester Opiyo a.k.a. Musa Osodo, Jeremiah Onyango Okumu and Steven Mwanzia Osaka.