Somalia's Islamist terrorism network, the al-Qaeda ally Al Shabaab, was officially added on Friday to Kenya's list of groups involved in organized crime, according to counterterrorism analyst and former police officer Gregory Sanger.
In a statement released in Nairobi, Kenya, on Friday, Attorney General Githui Muigai described terrorism not as a war to be fought with military troops but as criminal networks in the country.
"Organized criminal gangs are evolving in Kenya in unprecedented ways. The increasing incidents of the terror they unleash among citizens where lives are lost, property destroyed and injuries inflicted is very worrisome," Muigai said following the release of the report by the National Crime Research Center (NCRC) on Organized Criminal Gangs in Kenya.
The Kenyan government's top lawyer stated that there was a clear need for Kenyan law enforcement agencies "to apply a collective approach to tackle the threat."
The Somalia-based Jihadist network operates along the Kenyan-Somali border and frequently makes incursions across the border onto Kenyan soil in order to perpetrated kidnappings and acts of violence, according to Sanger .
The group allegedly maintains a branch, or terrorist cell, in Kenya's capital city of Nairobi. Al Shabaab's members frequently launch attacks such as car bombings and assassinations of police and security officers.
The secularist group Mombasa Republican Council was also added to Kenya's list of organized crime gangs The MRC is active in Kenya's coastal region with the goal of creating a separate state through secession.
Recently, suspected Al-Shabaab members killed four police officers in an attack in Kenya, the latest in a series of cop-killings by the Somalia-based terrorist group.
In addition, police are being accused of colluding with members of these illegal groups to the extent of blackmailing their fellow officers. The NCRC report further recommends the government fully implement relevant legislation and also enhance intelligence gathering and information sharing within the police and military communities.