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Nairobi says US not allowed to use Kenya to attack Somalia



East African Standard, 19 December 2001

Centre for Research on Globalisation (CRG),  globalresearch.ca,  20 December 2001

The [Kenyan] Department of Defence (DoD) yesterday remained firm that Kenya will not be used as a base by Americans to attack Somalia.

DoD said the Government and the department have not given the US the go-ahead to use its soil as a launching pad to hit suspected terrorist camps in war -ravaged Somalia. The department noted that what is carried in foreign media was mere speculation.

Other reports quoting a UK newspaper indicated that the deal to have Kenya used as a launching pad to attack Somalia was agreed to during talks between British Minister Geoff Hoon and President Moi.

Meanwhile, Dagoretti MP Beth Mugo (Social Democratic Party, opposition) yesterday said the alleged government decision to offer US troops a military base within Kenya's borders will open up the country to major terrorist attacks.

She said President Moi should not enter into such an agreement without involving parliament.

She said the US publicly lifted an aid embargo on Pakistan and India for further cooperation in the Afghanistan but "why is the Kenya government's engagement in the impending operations in Somalia being handled under the table?"

Also, the United States embassy's deputy chief of mission, Mr William Brencick, yesterday denied that the US government intends to use Kenyan bases to strike alleged terrorist camps in Somalia, add Dominic Wabala and Eliud Chisika.

Brencick said the US government has not had negotiations about the use of Kenyan bases or locations to strike alleged terrorist camps in Somalia.

He explained that his government is concentrating its fight against terrorism on Afghanistan and has not thought of targeting Somalia.

The British High Commission has, however, denied that any military action against Somalia or Sudan was discussed between Hoon and President Moi.

Meanwhile, Somalia yesterday urged the international community to support efforts to eradicate terrorism in the war -torn nation. Prime Minister, Mr Hassan Abshir Farah, said the transitional government is facing financial constraints which has made the fight against terrorism difficult. He was speaking in Nairobi when he led a delegation for reconciliation talks with other Somali groups.

Copyright  East African Standard. Reprinted For fair use only.

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