SECTIONS

Two suspects behind Mombasa explosions arrested in Musa Mosque raid

 Mombasa County Commissioner Nelson Marwa PHOTO: COURTESY

By STANDARD TEAM 

Mombasa, Kenya: Two men suspected to be behind the bombing of a bus in Mombasa on Saturday had been arrested by police in February after a raid on the Musa Mosque to flush out alleged radicalised youth.

The two are believed to have died in the explosion.

One of the men, Mr Suleiman Mohamed Said, was even on death row, but was allegedly freed after the court overturned his conviction of robbery with violence early this year, The Standard has established.

His suspected accomplice was allegedly a Mr Jamal Mohamed Awadh, who was also in the Masjid Musa during the February police raid.

“These two were arrested early this year during the Musa mosque incident,” Mombasa’s top CID officer Henry Ondiek told The Standard last evening. It was unclear how they were freed to execute the bloody attack that killed Emily Katana at Mwembe Tayari on Saturday night.

Mombasa County Commissioner Nelson Marwa (pictured) yesterday identified Katana, a female of undetermined age, as the casualty of the grenade attack on Chania Travellers bus.

Marwa said 16 others were injured, one of them seriously and is in the Intensive Care Unit at the Coast General Hospital.  On Sunday, President Kenyatta condemned the Saturday night attack through which “four deaths had been confirmed”, and said security forces have foiled numerous terror attacks.

The President said security forces  “ have already thwarted a number of attempted attacks,” and assured them of “further support that they need to keep us safe.”

“My government’s pursuit of extremists and their agents will continue; under law, it will be intensified. Those who chose to murder innocents will be defeated,” he said.

In Mombasa, detectives were yesterday pursuing a theory that the two men were actually the attackers behind the explosion that wrecked three buses.

Experts also believe that a blast that occurred at the Reef Hotel outside Mombasa city at around 6.30pm on Saturday could have been a coordinated ruse to facilitate the Mwembe Tayari attack by diverting police and rescue teams.