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Kenya and the threat of extremism
Date: 5 November 2013
Time: 08h30 - 17h00
Venue: Conference Room, ISS Nairobi

The 21 September terrorist attack on Westgate Mall in Nairobi raised concerns about al-Shabaab’s increasing aggressiveness and its broadening reach outside of Somalia. Questions have also been asked about whether the Westgate Mall attack could have been prevented and if Kenya is prepared to deal with similar threats in future.

In view of the militants’ threat to intensify attacks on Kenya until the Kenyan troops that are part of an African Union peacekeeping mission, leave Somalia, this seminar will examine the following issues:

  • The evolving threat posed by al-Shabaab and other extremist elements in Kenya
  • Kenya’s role in regional security
  • Policy responses to extremism in the Horn of Africa broadly, and Kenya in particular



08h30 to 09h00 Registration

09h00 to 09h10 Introductory remarks

  • Peter Alingo, Office Manager and Senior Researcher, ISS Nairobi
  • Markus Baldus, Regional Representative, Hanns Seidel Foundation

09h10 to 11h00 Session 1: The State of (in)security in Kenya


  • Markus Baldus, HSF Regional Representative


  • Macharia Munene, Professor of History, United States International University: Kenya’s security doctrine
  • Patrick Oduma, OCPD, Central Police Station: Kenya’s internal security concerns and challenges
  • Teresa Njeri, Lecturer, Utalii College: Kenya’s security from an environmental context
  • Q and A

11h00 to 11h20 Health break

11h20 to 12h45 Session 2: Kenya’s security in a regional context


  • Dr Kisiangani Emmanuel, Senior Researcher, ISS Nairobi


  • Capt (Rtd) Simiyu Werunga, Director, African Centre for Security and Strategic Studies: Kenya’s intervention in Somalia
  • Najum Mushtaq, Policy and Communication Advisor, Life and peace Institute: The Westgate Attack
  • Q and A

12h45 to 14h00 Lunch

14h00 to 16h00 Session 3: Understanding extremism

  • Dr Mustafa Ali, Executive Director, Arigatou International: The question of radicalisation in Kenya
  • Abdi Mohamed, Security analyst: Radicalisation as an ideology
  • Col Ezani Karani, Responding to extremism as a source of insecurity in Kenya
  • Q and A        

16h30 to 17h00 Conclusion

Cap (Rtd) Simiyu Werunga, Director, African Centre for Security and Strategic Studies: Summary of key issues and way forward

Please note: For all ISS events, specific permission must be sought from the speaker(s) concerned before anything they said can be quoted, unless indicated otherwise.

This event is made possible through funding provided by the Hanns Seidel Foundation Nairobi. The ISS is also grateful for the support of the following core partners: the governments of Norway, Sweden, Australia and Denmark.
Conference Room
ISS Nairobi
Samira Yusuf,
Phone: +254 728 607 642
Emmanuel Kisiangani
Phone: +254 728 607 642
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