Belfast Telegraph

Friday 24 October 2014

Youths quizzed after Kenya arrests

Two British citizens have been arrested in Kenya, near the border with Somalia

Two teenagers arrested by anti-terror police near Kenya's border with Somalia are being being quizzed by officers.

The pair, who are understood to be 17 or 18, went missing from their homes in Cardiff last week.

It is unclear why the youths were trying to reach Somalia - a destination known to attract jihadist sympathisers hoping to join Islamist rebel group al Shabab.

Charles Owino, deputy spokesman for the Kenyan police, said: "They were arrested crossing into Somalia. They are under investigation by the anti-terrorism unit of the Kenyan police."

Cardiff South and Penarth MP Alun Michael said the pair had disappeared last week, leaving their worried families fearing for their safety.

"The Muslim community became very concerned when they discovered that two young men had gone missing, one from a Somali background and one from a Pakistan background," he said.

"They are both quite young, about 17 or 18, and from what I have been told they are two bright, intelligent young men who have got their lives before them."

Their arrests came after a meeting between their two families, organised by the local Somali community.

"It was an immensely positive meeting for a community that doesn't want to see the message of Islam distorted and are determined to provide a positive model for their young people," Mr Michael said.

South Wales Police has been in contact with officers in the African country to establish why the pair were detained.

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