Uganda under tight security after blasts hit capital
The Ugandan capital Kampala was under heavy surveillance on Wednesday, the day after a double suicide attack claimed by the militant group, which left three people dead and several dozen injured, according to police.
The two attacks, carried out by three suicide bombers, took place on Tuesday morning within three minutes of each other, first at a checkpoint near the police headquarters, then near the parliament in the business district of the Ugandan capital.
“Security has been beefed up in and around Kampala to ensure that the population is safe from any danger,” Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesman Like Owoyesigyire said on Wednesday, encouraging “the public to remain on high alert because the threats are real and significant.”
On Wednesday morning, many armed police and military were visible in Kampala and checkpoints had been set up on some roads, causing traffic jams.
In the business district, some streets were blocked off and several government offices remained closed to the public.
Investigators continued to inspect the sites of the attacks that left at least three dead and 33 injured, according to police.
Some residents remained wary, avoiding travel in the capital.
“I didn’t go to work today because of yesterday’s attacks,” Sylvia Nabukeera, a 31-year-old mother working in a Kampala shopping mall.
“I have temporarily stopped working to look after my children until it is safe for me to go to work,” she added.
Police attributed Tuesday’s attacks to a “local group linked to the ADF,” the Allied Democratic Forces, a Ugandan-born rebellion active in neighbouring eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), before the EI claimed responsibility in the evening.
Since April 2019, some ADF attacks have been claimed by the EI, which refers to the group as its “Central Africa Province” (Iscap in English).
The double attack is the second deadly attack in Kampala claimed by the EI in a matter of weeks, following an October 23 bombing at a Kampala restaurant that killed a waitress and injured several people.
The following day, a suicide attack on a bus near Kampala left an unknown number of people injured, but no one claimed responsibility.
Ugandan authorities said they had established “a high level of connection” between the two attacks, which they attributed to the ADF.
On 8th October, Iscap also claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on a police station in Kampala, which did not result in any known casualties.