Somali refugees associated with terrorism must go home, Kenyan prime minister says

December 11, 2012

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Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga said Somali refugees who are associated with terrorism should be immediately repatriated, Kenya's Capital FM reported Monday (December 10th).

"We have discussed the security situation [in Eastleigh] because this is a recurring issue," Odinga said. "There must be measures put in place to deal with it, not just as a stopgap measure, but on a permanent basis so there is security in the area. The government has already ordered a crackdown to get all the people who are illegally residing in our country to places where they belong."

Internal Security Permanent Secretary Mutea Iringo said on Saturday that Somali refugees who escaped the Dadaab refugee complex were responsible for an attack on a mosque in Eastleigh after Friday prayers. The incident came two days after a roadside bomb in Eastleigh killed one person and injured eight. Iringo said 92 suspects were arrested in connection to the bombings and would be charged in court.

Iringo said Somalia is now safe enough for those who fled former al-Shabaab strongholds to return and that the Kenyan government is in talks with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to expedite the process.

Humanitarian organisations have said such repatriation is hasty, as the situation in Somalia is not yet stable and repatriated refugees would be subjected to substandard living conditions.

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