Solidarity to defeat terrorism, extremism- President Kenyatta


President Kenyatta during a state of the nation address
President Kenyatta during a state of the nation address

Solidarity will defeat the evil of terrorism sweeping across the world today, this is according to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The President said terrorism and violent extremism are the biggest challenges facing the world and the global community and individual nations must remain united to confront such groups.

President Kenyatta said even though Kenya has borne the brunt of terrorist attacks in the region the country has stayed emboldened against the intentions of the terror masterminds.

“Despite numerous attacks, the response by our people and States has been the opposite of that intended by the violent extremists. Attacks have emboldened our resolve,” said the President in a speech delivered on his behalf by Interior Cabinet Secretary Maj. Gen. (Rtd.) Joseph Nkaissery.

The CS read the speech at a leaders summit on countering violent extremism convened by U.S. President Barack Obama and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.

President Kenyatta said Kenya is alive to the changing nature of the threat of terrorism and has devised better mechanism to respond to such threats.

“To better respond – to detect, disrupt and defend- we have aligned our policy, legal, institutional and operational mechanisms,” said the President. “We have reviewed our security laws, adopted a number of strategies to deal with terrorist threats and related international crimes that facilitate each other.”

He said Kenya was working closely with local, regional and international partners to implement counter-terrorism and counter violent extremism efforts.

“I reaffirm Kenya’s commitment to implementing the U.N. Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy,” said the President.

He said Kenya looks forward to working closely with United Nations Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force to bolster its capabilities to deal with terrorism.   The President said Kenya was playing a robust role in promoting peace for the prosperity of all.

As a demonstration of its commitment to peace for all, Kenya hosted the Africa Regional CVE Conference in June 2015, as a follow-up to the inaugural White House Summit.

Further, it has participated in the Colloquium of Regional Counter Violent Extremism (CVE) conference organized by the Government of the Republic of Italy on 28 -29th July in Rome, and the United Nations Colloquium on border management.

President Kenyatta also thanked Kenya’s international partners for standing by Kenya against the evil of terrorism.

“At the bilateral level, I welcome the support received and pledged by a number of strategic partners including the United States of America, and look forward to enhance these collaborative actions, as a basis for drawing on best practices,” said the President.

The meeting on countering violent extremism was one of the several high-level security meetings President Kenyatta participated in during his visit to New York.

On Monday, President Kenyatta spoke at a high-level meeting on Somalia that brought together countries that contribute AMISOM troops and police to forces supporting the neighbouring country.

In the meeting, President Kenyatta called on the U.N. Security Council to give AMISOM a strengthened mandate that also allows for the right troop levels.

He said there is a need for a surge in the level of troops deployed by AMISOM to conclusively defeat the terrorists who have refused normalcy to return to Somalia and are threatening Kenya.

The President said the current trend where AMISOM troops liberate areas from Al Shabaab with terrorists subsequently moving to other sectors will end if troop levels are increased.

The President called on the international community to support AMISOM with required resources to defeat the terrorists.

“AMISOM needs sufficient resources to enable a surge that responds to practical military advice, to provide force multipliers in air and naval assets, and to increase stabilization and developmental efforts in liberated areas,” said the President.

He said the next phase of AMISOM must also focus on conditions necessary for rehabilitation and reconstruction of Somalia.

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Maureen Murimi
Story By Maureen Murimi
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