Police officers recalled to curb spillover of Ethiopia war

police officers

Police officers follow proceedings during a past event in Nairobi. All police officers on leave or off duty have been recalled .

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

All police officers on leave or off duty have been recalled as Kenya begins mobilising its security forces to prevent a spillover of the conflict in Ethiopia.

Deputy Inspector General Edward Mbugua, in a message to station commanders, said officers have until Monday to report back to work. There are fears that the spillover could bring with it an influx of refugees and arms, which will disrupt business in the northern part of the country.

The conflict, which has been ongoing for the past two years, has taken a turn for the worse as the two rebel forces fighting the government this week reached within striking distance of the capital Addis Ababa.

The Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), whose army has been fighting the Ethiopian National Defense Force for the last two years, have in the 10 days captured two more towns in the Amhara region as it advances to Addis Ababa.

Alarmed by the deteriorating turn of events, the National Security Council yesterday held a meeting chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta and resolved that all security agencies should increase their level of awareness and start mobilising their forces.

“President Uhuru Kenyatta has directed internal security institutions to heighten vigilance and surveillance across the country following the unfolding security situation in the region,” State House Spokesperson Kanze Dena Mararo said in a statement. Part of the resolutions agreed yesterday is the tightening of security along the 800 kilometre border between Kenya and Ethiopia by the military and the National Police Service Border Patrol Units (BPU)

The National Police Service has also been asked to set up additional roadblocks on all roads connecting Kenya and Ethiopia to monitor the movement of aliens and fire arms that may enter the country’s borders illegally.

The country is already witnessing a surge in aliens from Ethiopia and does not want to be in a similar situation to what happened after the fall of Somali dictator Siad Bare in 1991.