Friday, November 30, 2007

Kenya arrests 12 suspected Oromo rebels

Source: Reuters

ISIOLO, Kenya, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Kenyan police said on Friday they had arrested 12 suspected Ethiopian rebels and nine locals accused of helping them in a remote region on the border with Ethiopia.

Two of the suspected members of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) rounded up this week have already been deported while the others are still being interrogated, said Rono Bunei, district police commander in the Kenyan border town of Moyale.

"The operation is still going on and we shall not allow any group to use our soil to fight a friendly government," he said. The rest will be deported if confirmed as OLF members.

One of several insurgent groups fighting Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi's government, the OLF seeks greater autonomy for ethnically Oromo areas of south Ethiopia.

The nine Kenyans were arrested for offering shelter to the 12, police said.

Some locals said innocent youths had been arrested.

"Most of the people arrested are Kenyans," local resident Barrack Mohammed told Reuters.

"We have lived with them and they can't do anything like that. The police are just picking on them." (Reporting by Noor Ali, Editing by Joseph Sudah and Robert Woodward)


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