Police are looking for an Al-Shabaab militant suspected to have masterminded the attack on General Service Unit Officers in Garissa on 12th October 2019 leading to the death of ten officers.
A source within the security agencies indicates that Abdullahi Banati, a Somali Galjeel, led a team of militants that planted Improvised Explosive Devices (IED’s) that killed the General Service Unit officers from Har Har GSU camp.
Investigations into the incident indicate that Banati is the commander of a team of militants operating along the border and masterminding nuisance attacks against security agencies and the members of the public.
Police are said to have traced the activities of Banati and his team of militants to the border and it is suspected that he escaped to Somalia with the rest of the operatives. Police say that the group is responsible for cross border incursions into the Kenyan territory especially in Garissa and is responsible for numerous attacks along the border area.
Additionally, police indicate that Banati planned the attack with the help of operatives operating within the Dadaab refugee complex. This will not be the first time that the complex has been adversely mentioned. In the past, the refugee complex has played host to attackers who carried out the Garissa University attack in 2015 and also allowed the transit of attackers during the Westgate attack in 2013 and the Dusit attack in January 2019.
Abdullahi Banati is reported to have joined Al-Shabaab in 2012. He was involved in the attempted attack on a Baure KDF camp in in June 2015 where Al-Shabaab fighters tried to launch an assault on the camp leading to a fierce firefight that killed eleven Al-Shabaab militants.
During the attack, Banati is said to have been injured and retreated to Somalia to recuperate. He however resurfaced in 2018 after being deployed by Al-Shabaab to lead a group of militants carrying out attacks along the border.
Police are calling on the members of the public with information on Abdullahi Banati to come forward and report in order to assist in investigations into the terror network in Garissa.