Kenyan police arrest 2 men with bomb-making materials, including detonator, in the capital

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Kenyan police arrest 2 with bomb-making materials

NAIROBI, Kenya — Police officers acting on a tip have arrested two men with bomb-making materials in the Kenyan capital, a police spokesman said.

The suspects — identified as Pastor John Kamau and accomplice Samuel Chege Gitau — were arrested Saturday with a substance believed to be ammonium nitrate, a detonator and a safety fuse, police spokesman Eric Kiraithe said in a statement released late Saturday.

Ammonium nitrate fertilizer can be used as an ingredient in bombs.

“The two suspects are now under investigation to establish their motive and identify any other accomplices,” Kiraithe said.

Kenya has beefed up its security after last week’s twin blasts in Uganda that killed 76 people who were watching the World Cup final on television.

Kenyans are scheduled to vote on a draft constitution on Aug. 4, and fears have risen in recent weeks that campaigns for and against the document may polarize the country and spark fresh violence.

Six people were killed and more than 100 others wounded last month when unidentified attackers threw three grenades into a crowd of thousands protesting against the constitution in a downtown Nairobi park.

“Police are taking all possible measures to ensure law and order is observed during the referendum campaigns and on the voting day,” Kiraithe said.

The August referendum will be the first nationwide vote since Kenya’s 2007 presidential election, which saw more than 1,000 people killed following days of rampaging violence after the contentious vote.

The campaign against the draft constitution opposes a clause that would allow abortion to save a mother’s life. Opponents, including church leaders and senior politicians, also don’t like a clause that would recognize informal courts used by Kenya’s Islamic community.

will not be displayed