Kenya Claims to Have Killed Al-Shabaab Intelligence Chief
Kenya claims it has killed the commander of Al-Shabaab’s elite intelligence unit in Somalia.
Kenyan forces, operating under the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), reportedly, staged air strikes during a graduation ceremony for new recruits of the Islamist group. Al-Shabaab has denied Mahad Karate was killed in the operation.
A major loss for Al-Shabaab
If claims from Kenya are true, the death of Mahad Karate will be a major loss to Al-Shabaab and a key victory for Somalia and the African Union (AU) in its war against the militants.
Otherwise known as Abdirahim Mohamed Warsame, Karate is believed to be a prominent figure in Al-Shabaab’s intelligence and tactical units. The US has previously linked the intelligence chief with the Amniyat wing of Al-Shabaab, which held the graduation he was attending during the air strikes.
Amniyat is believed to have orchestrated the attack on Kenyan bases last month, where Al-Shabaab claimed to have killed 100 Kenyan Defence Force (KDF) soldiers. The US has also linked Amniyat with the Garissa attack in Kenya that killed nearly 150 civilians.
Al-Shabaab denies claims
Meanwhile, the Islamist group has dismissed claims from Kenya that Karate has been killed in any operations.
“The claims by Kenyan government that it killed what they called the al-Shabab intelligence chief is a mere fabrication,” the group’s Andulus online radio station insisted.
The militant group, which has ties with Al-Qaeda, ahs denied the deaths of key members before, but claims the news from Kenya is an attempt to divert attention from its losses in recent attacks carried out by Al-Shabaab.
On Wednesday, the terrorist group pledged to scale up attacks in Somalia – something that appears to already have begun in recent months. Al-Shabaab was mostly pushed out of key cities in the country, but the group has staged an increased number of attack in the early months of 2016.
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