Kenyan security forces on Friday said they are making inroads against al Shabaab Islamist militants in Kenya.
The joint army and police said they had killed 10 suspected mIlitants and arrested 36 others since the start of an operation launched in September 2015 against the insurgents along the coastal area.
This follows a series of attacks launched by the insurgents, specifically targeting the Boni Forest in the coastal town of Lamu.
“We are having a permanent base set up within the forest that will be used by both our military and police to ensure continuous security,” he told Reuters, adding that “around 10” suspected militants who refused to surrender had been killed.
Kenya also said on Monday it was drawing up a timetable to close Dadaab camp, home to about 350,000 Somali refugees, citing concerns it was being used by militants. The United Nations, the United States and rights groups have urged Kenya to reconsider.
In 2014, about 100 people were killed by al Shabaab militants in the Mpeketoni area of Lamu County, next to Boni forest.
Last year, Ole Serian said they had destroyed five al Shabaab hideouts in the forest and recovered a cache of arms.
Kenya has beefed up security in Lamu County and Lamu town, a popular tourist destination where visitor numbers in the wake of the militant attacks. Lamu lies near the Somali border.
Meanwhile in Somalia’s city , U.S. forces called in an air strike on Thursday that killed five fighters from the al Qaeda-linked militant group al Shabaab, the latest in a series of U.S. military operations targeting the organization.
The U.S. forces had been advising Ugandan soldiers with the African Union mission (AMISOM) during an operation against an illegal taxation checkpoint when the Ugandans got into a firefight with 15-20 al Shabaab fighters.
Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis said no American forces were wounded on the ground during the incident which took place west of Mogadishu, the capital.