Accessibility links

Kenyan Police Arrest 1,000 in Crackdown on Illegal Immigrants, Criminals

Kenyan police have arrested at least 1,000 people in the coastal town of Mombasa.

Police say most of those in custody are illegal immigrants, drug traffickers and petty thiefs. They say the crackdown was meant to rid the resort city of criminals.

But the crackdown has angered leaders of Mombasa's Muslim community. Some are accusing Kenyan authorities of singling out Muslims and detaining children.

The city of Mombasa has been the focus of anti-terrorism efforts since last year's deadly attack at an Israeli-owned hotel there. At least 16 people were killed when a truck loaded with explosives slammed into the hotel lobby.

Minutes before, shoulder-launched missiles were fired at an Israeli charter jet as it took off from Mombasa's airport. The missiles missed their target.

Five Kenyans believed to have ties to the al-Qaida terrorist network have been charged in the hotel bombing. Kenyan police arrested two other suspects in August but one blew himself up with a grenade as he was being taken into custody.