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Security beefed up after discovery of ammunition in mall

26 March 2014, 08:00

Nairobi - Police said on Tuesday that they have beefed up security around Nairobi particularly in major shopping malls after the discovery of four empty ammunition boxes at one of retail chains in Nairobi.

Nairobi police commander Benson Kibue confirmed that four empty ammunition boxes were discovered late Monday at the basement of Nakumatt Junction Supermarket but refused to divulge more information on the discovery.

Kibue said the boxes were found abandoned on a trolley at the basement of the Nakumatt which the police suspect might have stayed there for long. Workers at the retail chain said the boxes have been at the basement since Sunday.

"We have not found the owners of the bullets and the destination of the bullets and for what motive they were to be used. We are investigation," a senior police officer who did not want to be named told Xinhua on Tuesday.

The officer said investigators are looking for the bullets which they fear might be used to cause mayhem in the country.

"Each box contains 50 bullets. We fear the criminals wanted to use them to kill shoppers at the supermarket which is frequented by many shoppers," he said.

The police have called on business community operating in the city to cooperate and screen all cars and visitors entering their businesses in the city.

Workers at the supermarket said the attendants found the boxes when they were returning the trolleys into the premises but added that the police arrived at the scene and took the bullets away.

"We don't know who these boxes reached the basement because we do screen shoppers and all vehicles which park at the basement," one of the workers at the Nakumatt junction.

"We have increased patrols around the city to ensure Nairobians are safe. We are not taking any chances," said a senior police officer who did not want to be named.

The authorities have particularly warned against the laxity in the screening of cars for explosives at all shopping malls and any business or social gatherings with at least 10 people at any given moment that these might be vulnerable to attacks.

Al-Shabaab militants have often said the attacks are a retaliation of the military incursion in their country where Kenyan forces are fighting under the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia.

- Xinhua

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