The Islamic State group has said its members carried out the twin suicide bomb attacks that rocked the capital Kampala, killing six people – including suicide bombers.
According to police spokesperson Fred Enanga, the suicide bomb blasts, which happened at 10:03am and 10:06am at the Kampala Central Police Station (CPS) and along Parliamentary Avenue, respectively.
“The first attack occurred near the check point to the Central Police Station, in Kampala at around 10.03am. The fresh footages on CCTV clearly indicate how a male adult, putting on a black jacket, and carrying a back pack, detonated himself. He died instantly and the spillover effect, caused additional injuries to police officers and other civilians who were within a radius of 30 metres,” explained Enanga.
“Two other people have been confirmed dead, while several others sustained very critical injuries. Those injured were within the section covering the point of impact and the front desk area at the Central Police Station.”
The police spokesperson continued: “Another bomb blast occurred within three minutes at Raja Chambers and Jubilee Insurance Building along the Parliament Avenue. Two suicide bombers were clearly captured, on motorcycles, disguising as bodaboda riders. They detonated the bombs they were carrying on themselves, that killed them instantly. The spillover effects damaged several motor vehicles and buildings at both scenes of attack.”
Enanga further noted that 33 people were injured, five of them critically, and were being treated at the Mulago National Referral Hospital.
Police and counterterrorism blamed the attacks on Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), further warning the public the terrorist group could be plotting more attacks.
“These attacks come 22 days after the last suicide bomb attack on a Swift Safaris Bus. It clearly shows that the ADF linked radicalized groups, still have a desire to carry out lethal attacks, on soft targets, using suicide attackers and improvised explosive devices,” said Enanga.
“These kinds of threats remain significant because IEDs and suicide bomb jackets, can easily be built from common household, items found in local markets, retail shops and supermarkets. Many businesses unconsciously sell these items, that are used to sell bombs, which calls for extra vigilance. We encourage all business persons and the public, to voluntarily report suspicious activities, such as persons buying large amounts of chemicals and materials that can be used to build bombs.”
The police publicist further revealed that the fourth suicide bomb on another mission, which was foiled, was injured by a pursuing counter-terror team.
“Although three suicide bombers died in the double bomb attacks, our CT response teams managed to pursue a fourth suicide bomb attacker, identified as Moze and cornered him at Bwaise. They shot and injured him, and immediately after, recovered an unexploded improvised explosive device on him. A second IED was recovered from his home, at Katooke – Nansana village, which the bomb squad, have neutralized,” noted Enanga.
“We are now pursuing other members of the terror groups.”
IS, used its Instagram page to claim it was behind the attacks.
Tuesday’s attacks were the biggest since the 2010 twin bombings where at least 76 people, most of them fans watching the World Cup final at two locations in Kampala, dead.
The 2010 attacks were carried out by Al-Shabaab in protest of Uganda’s deployment of troop in Somalia under the Amisom arrangement.
Although the ADF is largely active in eastern DR Congo where it has killed thousands of people, Ugandan security agencies say a domestic terror operating in the country has carried out recent attacks.
ADF is just one of the over 120 armed groups that operate in DR Congo.
Weeks ago, a terror attack at a Komamboga eatery left one woman dead while a suspected suicide bomber was killed in an explosion on an Ishaka-bound Swift Safaris bus.
For over two years now, since April 2019, IS has been claiming responsibility for attacks undertaken by ADF.
IS considers ADF its Islamic State Central Africa Province (ISCAP) branch. The IS accuses Uganda of being part of the war against the Islamic State in Central Africa.
Eight months ago, the US declared ADF part of IS.