Business, Finance & Economics

Kenya News: Terror suspect claims to be Al Shabaab


A Kenyan man has pleaded guilty to taking part in a grenade blast in Nairobi and claimed he from from the militant group Al Shabaab. Here a man receives medical treatment at the Kenyatta national hospital following a grenade attack in the capital on Oct. 24, 2011.


Simon Maina

NAIROBI, Kenya — A Kenyan man arrested after two grenade blasts shook the country's capital, Nairobi, admitted in court Wednesday that he participated in one of the attacks and is a member of the Somali militant group Al Shabaab.

Elgiva Bwire Oliacha pleaded guilty to nine charges connected to the deadly blast Monday evening at a Nairobi bus stop, according to Tristan McConnell, GlobalPost’s senior correspondent in East Africa. At least one person died in the attack and eight more were injured, the Guardian reports.

More: Nairobi attack injures 14

More charges will be brought against Oliacha, 28, on Friday relating to the second Monday blast that targeted a Nairobi bar and wounded a dozen people, a Kenyan police officer told AP. Oliacha is expected to plead guilty to those charges, also.

Oliacha was arrested Tuesday night by Kenyan anti-terror police officers at his home in a city slum, which housed 13 grenades, an AK47, a rifle, a machine gun, four pistols and ammunition,” according to BBC. Police have described him as from a Kenyan tribe and not a native Somali.

More: Nairobi on alert after 2 grenade blasts

The dual grenade attacks at the bus stop and a Nairobi bar Monday came two weeks after Kenya launched its offensive into Somalia against Al Shabaab. Kenya blames the radical Islamist group for a series of recent kidnappings in which foreigners have been abducted from Kenya and taken into Somalia, according to BBC. One of the abducted people, a disabled Frenchwoman, died while being held by her kidnappers. 

Al Shabaab denied responsibility for the kidnappings and it has threatened reprisal attacks within Kenya for sending troops into Somalia.