Uganda charges 15 with terrorism over deadly bombings

Uganda has charged 15 people, including a pregnant woman, with terrorism over their alleged role in recent attacks blamed on a rebel group, police said Friday.

Uganda was hit by a series of bombings in October and November that killed five people and injured dozens.

Ugandan authorities said a “domestic terror group” with ties to the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) — a militant outfit which Washington has linked to the Islamic State — was responsible for the attacks.

“Fifteen people appeared before court yesterday on charges of terrorism, aiding, abetting terrorism and belonging to a terrorist group,” Kampala’s Metropolitan Police deputy spokesman, Luke Owoyesigyire, told AFP Friday.

Following the attacks, Uganda last month deployed forces and launched air and artillery strikes in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) against the ADF, after Kinshasa gave Kampala approval to pursue the militants on its soil.

Twin suicide bombings on November 16 in the capital Kampala left four people dead and 33 wounded.

The attacks, claimed by IS, came on the heels of a bombing at a roadside eatery on October 23 that killed one woman, and a suicide blast on a bus near Kampala on October 25 that wounded several people.

Police spokesman Owoyesigyire said all 15 suspects were involved in the four bombings and will remain in custody until January 13 when they will appear in court again.

Since April 2019, some ADF attacks in eastern DR Congo have been claimed by IS, which describes the group as its Islamic State Central Africa Province offshoot.

In March, the United States placed the ADF on its list of “terrorist” organisations linked to IS.

Uganda has also blamed the group for a foiled bomb attack in August on the funeral of an army commander who led a major offensive against Al-Shabaab militants in Somalia.


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