Al-Shabab fighter (file photo).
Somalia’s al-Shabab group has threatened Kenya with revenge attacks on Kenyan soil, as a consequence for sending tanks and troops across the border into Somalia to combat the group.
Kenya sent in additional troops last October to fight al-Shabab in southern Somalia.
“The Kenyan public must be aware that the more Kenyan troops continue to persecute innocent Somalians, the less secure Kenyan cities will be; and the more oppression the Somalians feel, the more constricted Kenyan life will be. Such is the law of retribution,” a statement by the fighters’ group said on Sunday.
The statement comes a day after attacks in the Kenyan coastal cities of Mombasa and Mtwapa killed one person and injured 24 others. The Kenyan government casts suspicion on al-Shabab for the blasts. But the group did not explicitly claim responsibility for the attacks.
The statement further said that “the worsening insecurity in Kenyan cities is an embodiment of Kenya's misguided policies that place foreign interests above its national interests and the security of Western nations above the security of its citizens”.
Al-Shabab has staged attacks in Kenya since Nairobi sent troops into Somalia to pursue the group. However, Saturday's blasts were the first to target Mombasa, one of Kenya's top tourist destinations, and were staged just before the busy Easter tourist season in the coming week.
Somalia has been the scene of a decades-long civil strife that erupted after the ouster of former junta ruler Mohammed Siad Barre, which has left the country without a functioning government since 1991.