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Harun Aydin to be arraigned on Monday over terrorism activities

The Turkish national in Deputy President William Ruto's aborted trip to Uganda will be arraigned on Monday, even as investigators hope to detain him longer for further questioning.

Sources within the police told The Standard that the police will seek to detain Harun Aydin for 14 days as they investigate claims that the businessman might be a terror activities’ financier.

Aydin could also face charges of being in Kenya illegally.

Highly placed sources yesterday indicated that Aydin could be arraigned at the Kahawa Law Courts, suggesting that he might face terrorism-related charges.

The court, next to Kamiti Maximum Prison, was opened last year by former Chief Justice David Maraga to handle terrorism suspects.

Circulated photo

A photo showing the businessman allegedly booked by the anti-terror police alleges that Aydin is a ‘suspect of terrorism financing’.

However, The Standard could not independently verify the credibility of the image that has circulated widely on social media.

Officers aware of Aydin’s detention said that the Turkish businessman has allegedly refused to record a statement with the police and have confirmed that he is in police custody, amid claims that he may have been secretly deported.

Aydin spent a second night at the Nairobi Area anti-terrorism police unit (ATPU). Lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi yesterday claimed that he had been denied the right to see the Turkish man.

“Fortunately, they have no choice but to bring him to court tomorrow as Article 50 of the Constitution kicks in,” he posted on social media.

Attempts by officials from Turkey’s Embassy and Aydin’s lawyers to secure his release were futile on Saturday.

Information regarding Aydin’s detention remains scanty, as police remain tight-lipped over the matter that has stirred controversy.

Aydin was arrested on his way back from Uganda at Wilson Airport.

Ruto support

Ruto has lamented the Turk’s arrest, terming it political pettiness. The DP has repeatedly said that Aydin is a businessman who is legally in the country.

“I am the deputy president of this country. I cannot associate with terrorists,” Ruto said on Saturday, vouching for Aydin’s innocence.

Last week, Ruto claimed he had helped the Turk secure funding for a Sh15 billion-shilling investment in Uganda.

Allies of the DP, including Kapseret MP Oscar Sudi who travelled with him to Uganda, have also protested his arrest.

Diplomatic row

In the wake of claims that Aydin was allegedly linked to terrorism activities, his parent embassy said that the businessman had no criminal record.

“We have heard them (Turkish Embassy), but let them also allow us to use our other methods of checking. There is no point in pushing a criminal allegation and conclusion on someone if they are not. I don’t think it hurts to give us some little time to check,” Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho told The Standard on Wednesday last week.

Aydin secured a work permit in June this year to operate Unit 2HA Investment Energy Africa Ltd, a company he runs, in the country.

On Saturday, Ruto posted the e-permit that Aydin had acquired on his Twitter handle.

Aydin’s arrest portends diplomatic friction between Kenya and Turkey, coming on the heels of what could spiral into a diplomatic spat between Kenya and Uganda over Ruto’s aborted Uganda trip.

A Ugandan citizen, who was reportedly deported after he jetted in the country accompanying Aydin, has sued Kenya at the Arusha-based East African Court of Justice.

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