Uganda issues Shabaab terror alert

By Halima Athumani, Monday, March 17, 2014

KAMPALA – Ugandan police are warning of possible terror plots by the Somali militant group Al-Shabaab to attack fuel stations in the country.

"We have received intelligence information that terrorists belonging to the Al-Shabaab group are planning to attack Uganda by hitting fuel tankers on transit, fuel depots and stations," deputy police spokesperson Onyango Patrick said in a statement late Monday.

Uganda security agencies have, thus, activated and tightened security in particular around fuel tanker stopovers and parking places. 

"We have deployed adequately in these places with both overt and covert personnel," said Patrick.

Police have decided to escort all fuel tankers from Busia and Malaba borders with Kenya in a convoy by our Counter Terrorism Officers in liaison with the Territorial Commanders of the area in which these tankers are passing.

According to Patrick, fuel deliveries in the capital shall be done under the escort of the Counter terrorism Police and Kampala Metropolitan Police.

"These will only be at night from 9:00pm to 6:00am and not during day," said the spokesman.

Police are engaging all fuel dealers and truck drivers to comply with the new measures.

Police are also guarding all fuel stations and depots throughout the country and shall enhance focused counter terrorism deployments.

"These will include foot, motorized patrols, and surveillance and intelligence operations in the country," said Patrick.

This is the second time this year that police are issuing a terror alert.

In February, the United States warned of a possible terrorist threat to Kampala during February or March, but without identifying who was behind it.

Uganda has troops fighting against Al-Shabaab militants in Somalia.

The group has repeatedly threatened to strike Uganda unless its forces withdraw from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

In July 2010, Al-Shabaab orchestrated two bombings in Kampala that killed 79 people who were watching a World Cup match.

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