MOMBASA (Xinhua) --
Kenyan police said Monday they have arrested 14 suspected members
of a criminal gang that planned to carry out attacks during New Year
celebrations in Mombasa.
Local police commander Willy Simba said 12
machetes and knives were seized from the suspects who were arrested in the
"We had received intelligence reports that some members of a criminal gang
were planning to cause mayhem targeting revelers who had converged to celebrate
the New Year," Simba said.
According to the police, most of the 14 suspects are aged between 15 and 22
Simba said they suspected the arrested were members of a gang named Watalia,
which was among 90 criminal gangs listed by the government recently.
During the Christmas eve, three police officers were injured as a gang armed
with machetes and poisoned arrows raided a police camp in the coastal town of
Police killed one of the eight attackers and prevented them from forcing
their way into the camp.
Kwale County Commissioner Kutswa Olaka said the gang members had not been
identified but that their aim might have been to steal guns.
Mombasa County Commissioner Evans Achoki said police had intensified patrols
in Mombasa during the festive season, with sea and aerial patrols in place.
"We had no serious cases of insecurity in Mombasa but urge both security and
public must remain vigilant.
"Terrorism still remains a threat in the region,"