Police carried out nightly raids in Mombasa and Kwale as they investigated a botched terror plot that saw two suspects arrested on Monday.
This comes as it emerged that security had been tightened in the coastal region following the arrest of two terrorist suspects crossing the Likoni Canal.
They seized a range of explosives and weapons in what would have been a planned terrorist attack.
Several sources told the Nation that raids were carried out on homes targeting supporters of terrorism.
Special police units are also carrying out other investigations targeting terrorist cells, recruiters and individuals suspected of helping young people to join terrorist groups.
“They are also looking for those who directly or indirectly engage with terrorist suspects,” said a senior police officer.
The targeted areas include parts of Kwale and Mlango wa Papa in the old town of Mombasa and Mvita in Mombasa County.
The Nation learned that on Monday evening, hours after the two suspects were arrested, police were carrying out a door-to-door search in Kuze, in the old town, where they smashed metal doors, gaining access to houses.
Planned terrorist activities
It is understood that several persons of interest were taken away by the officers.
Witnesses said a contingent of officers from the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit (ATPU) arrived in several vehicles around midnight. It is suspected that they had the names of specific people on their radar.
All of these operations began after the arrest of Abdulhakim Salim Sagar, whom the police linked to planned terrorist activities in Mombasa.
Homes were also targeted in Kwale on Monday and Tuesday after intelligence reports said the two arrested suspects and two others who escaped were living in a sympathizer’s home in Lungalunga.
It also served as a safe place for the weapons they had transported from the Democratic Republic of the Congo through the Lungalunga border post.
Kwale County Commissioner Joseph Kanyiri told the Nation that security agencies are on high alert, with close surveillance of the Lungalunga crossing.
“Our officers are currently addressing this emerging security issue using a multi-agency approach,” he said.
Terrorism suspects arrested
He added that residents should always report unusual events and share the reports with relevant security organs, from chiefs to police stations.
He also urged hotels to make sure they enter their guest’s data when checking in so they don’t harbor criminals.
“It will help us to stop all dangerous activities that can be harmful to the country. It will also be easier for them to be intercepted,” he said.
On Monday, police arrested two terrorists suspected of planning to attack a police station in Mombasa. It was a mission of retaliation and commemoration of the death of Sheikh Aboud Rogo on August 27.
Rogo was known to have radicalized young people in Mombasa and other parts of the coastal region.
The Nation has learned that the two suspects, a Tanzanian and a Kenyan, are returnees from Al-Shabaab with contacts in Mombasa and Kwale.
This put security agencies in the coastal region on high alert even as intelligence reports showed Cabo Delgado in Mozambique had become the new frontier for radicalized young men, some from the coastal region. from Kenya.