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Kenyan MPs’ trip to Somalia amid tension near Mandera border

By Cyrus Ombati | Mar 1st 2020 | 1 min read

Eight Members of Parliament from Wajir and Mandera counties flew to Somalia for an unclear mission in the wake of tension between Jubaland and Somali National Army troops near Mandera border.

The eight were cleared for departure to Mogadishu aboard Salaamair Air Express Flight WU-751 on Saturday at around 11 am.

Officials said the leaders do not represent the Government of Kenya nor are they emissaries of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In Mogadishu, they met the Somali National Intelligence Agency (NISA) officials for a brief amid claims Somalia is lobbying them to push Kenya to stop supporting Jubaland leadership led by Ahmed Mohamed Islam Madobe.

The politicians are sympathetic to Somali clan politics and have been involved in direct talks with the Somali Government.

There has been growing tension near the Kenyan border in Mandera following reports the SNA is amassing troops ahead of planned clashes. Jubaland security too says they are ready to defend their territories.

The neighbouring country is accusing Kenya of harbouring Jubaland security minister, Abdirashid Janan Hassan Abdinur, currently a fugitive of the law. 

Janan orchestrated his escape from a Mogadishu prison on January 28, 2020, after almost five months in incarceration following his arrest on August 31, 2019, and made his way to the border town of Mandera. 

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