Iran rejects Kenya 'attacks' plot

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iStock

Nairobi - Iran's embassy in Kenya on Tuesday denied any links to two Kenyan men police said were allegedly recruited by an Iranian group to plot attacks in the east African nation.

Police chief Joseph Boinett on Saturday said they believed the two arrested men had travelled to Iran several times, identifying them as Abubakar Sadiq Louw, 69, and Yassin Sambai Juma, 25.

"We have irrefutable evidence they were recruited into an Iranian spying ring," Boinett said, claiming "the mission of that ring was to mount terror attacks in [Nairobi], not only targeting Western interests but targeting our people as well."

But the Iranian mission said it "denies any relation" with the pair, and added it was "ready to co-operate" with Kenyan officials.

Police gave no further details about the alleged Iranian group the men were linked to.

Iranians are treated with particular suspicion in Kenya, which is a close ally of Israel.

In May 2013, a Kenyan court sentenced two Iranians to life in prison on terror-related charges, including possessing explosives allegedly to be used in bomb attacks.

Israeli businesses in Kenya have been targeted in the past, including the al-Qaeda claimed bombing of an Israeli-owned hotel in Mombasa in 2002, in which 18 people died, as well as a failed missile strike on an Israeli charter plane at the same time.

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