Burundi Security Forces Arrest 11 in Terror Crackdown

Burundi police arrested 11 people in an anti-terrorist crackdown made in the wake of an attack by militants on a shopping mall in Nairobi last month in which at least 67 civilians and security personnel were killed.

Five Pakistanis and a Nigerian were among those detained in the raid across two districts of the Burundi capital Bujumbura, according to police spokesman Pierre Nkurikiye. The operation was part of the country’s effort to investigate those who have no identification papers and whose activities are unknown, he said today.

As many as 15 gunmen of the Somali Islamist group, Al-Shabaab, stormed the upmarket Westgate mall in the Kenyan capital on Sept. 21, spraying bullets and lobbing grenades at the start of a four-day siege. Al-Shabaab had threatened attacks in Kenya after the country sent troops to Somalia in October 2011 to oust the militia group. Burundi has also faced threats since it joined the African peace mission to Somalia known as AMISON in 2007.

“There are people who are suspicious and who need to explain what they are doing in Burundi,” Nkurikiye said. Police conducted regular searches in the landlocked East African country and had arrested hundreds of people, he said.

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