Ethiopia neutralizes two al shabaab terror cells
Addis Ababa, 5 June 2014 (WIC) - Ethiopia’s counter terrorism task force announced they have neutralized two al Shabaab terror cells operating in Ethiopia.
In a statement issued to the media on Wednesday, the Joint Counter Terrorism Unit of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) and the Federal Police said the terror cells consisted of 25 individuals recruited and trained by al Shabaab.
The statement said the groups were assigned to promote an extremist Islamic sect of Khawarij which opposes tax payments, observance of traffic rules and modern education among others.
The first terrorist cell was under a direct command from an extremist group in South Africa and was captured while making preparations for attacks in the western Ethiopian city of Jimma after crossing the border from Kenya, the statement said.
The second terrorist cell have been in contact and receiving direct guidance and leadership from the Khawarij extremist movements in Sudan, Yemen and United Kingdom, the statement added.
The press release recalled that adherents of Khawarij sect had been liquidated by security officers in western Ethiopia about twelve years ago.
The announcement comes amid a heightened terror alert in the country following threats of an attack by al Shabaab, an al Qaeda linked Somali terrorist group.
On Tuesday, Ethiopia’s counter terrorism unit said it has arrested an al shabaab terror suspect while preparing to launch an attack in Addis Ababa.
Al Shabaab has been threatening to launch attacks in countries that sent troops to Somalia. The African Union backed troops comprising of soldiers from Ethiopia Kenya, Uganda and Djibouti are fighting the terrorist group in Somalia.
The al-Qaeda affiliated group has already managed to successfully launch deadly terror attacks on Kenya, Uganda and Djibouti.
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