Ethiopian rebels fight in Kenya


By Boniface Ongeri

and Vitalis Kimutai

The Government has acknowledged the presence of Ethiopian rebel group members in Garissa County.

This is after it was established that the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) group threatened a prominent clergymen in the county who it claimed has links with a breakaway faction that is warming to the Ethiopian Government. ONLF has been battling the Government of Ethiopia demanding secession.

However, reports indicate that the group split. The factions have been fighting for the last three months resulting to casualties on both Kenya and Ethiopia sides.

The fighting has now spilled into Kenya as the rival groups hunt each other and suspected Kenyan collaborators.

North Eastern PC James Ole Serian said they were following crucial leads to dealing with the threats of the rebel group.

"We are not reluctant in dealing with the security threat, " he said.

A section of leaders led by the Council of Imams and Preachers of Kenya Garissa branch chairman Sheikh Hassan Amey said foreign fighters had taken over Garissa.

"The Government knows the foreigners are here but they have done nothing to avert bloodshed, " he said after a meeting in the town.

Death and destruction

The meeting was called by Youth Agenda. The organisation’s regional representative Ismail Abdikadir asked the Government to deal with the militiamen.

Meanwhile, Wajir South MP Mohamed Sirat has also raised concern over increased attacks by heavily armed bandits along the Kenya-Somalia border.

Sirat said three people were killed and eight others seriously injured by the bandits at Babajatula at the weekend.

"The bandits hijacked a vehicle and fled with it to Somalia leaving a trail of death and destruction," Sirat said.

The MP added that in the last six months, more than 14 people have been killed in Habaswein District by bandits operating along the border.

He claimed youths who had received paramilitary training and posted to reinforce the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia were behind the attacks.