Uganda – Two suicide bombers riding motorcycles were definitely captured (by security cameras). They pretended to be boda boda riders (motorcycle taxi drivers). They detonated the bombs strapped to their bodies. They were quickly killed by this, “Ugandan police spokesman Fred Enanga said. According to police, the explosions occurred near the central police station and the entrance to parliament in Kampala’s core business center.
“What we can say is that this was an attack,” Uganda’s Assistant Inspector General of Police, Edward Ochom, told AFP. “Who is responsible is a matter that is under investigation.” Ainebyoona Emmanuel, a spokeswoman for the health ministry, stated on Twitter that the Mulago Hospital in Kampala was treating 24 individuals, four of whom were in serious condition. “Our health workers are working around the clock to save the lives of those who have been injured as a result of the tragic and cowardly act of terrorism,” he said.
According to Ochom, the explosion near the police station smashed glass, while the one at the parliament’s entrance caused automobiles parked nearby to burst into flames. Uganda Red Cross spokesperson Irene Nakasiita told AFP, “We have despatched a team” to the area. The twin strikes come after two bombings in Kampala last month: a bus explosion that injured many people and a bombing at a roadside diner that killed one woman.
Both attacks were related last month, according to police, and were carried out by the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), which the US has tied to the Islamic State group. The executive director of Uganda’s Internet Exchange Point, Kyle Spencer, told AFP that the blasts on Tuesday had caused panic among many residents in the area. “The road to parliament is stopped, people are just crying, and everyone else is simply trying to get out of these regions,” he said. “Everyone is fleeing from office buildings, which are closing up and refusing to let anyone in.”
Following the attacks, Parliament canceled its Tuesday session, advising members to avoid the area “while security forces work tirelessly to restore order.” The location was put under heavy security, with highly armed soldiers securing the area while forensics officers in white overalls searched for clues at the blast scene. The US Embassy in Kampala has advised its nationals to avoid the area and keep an eye on local news.
Last month, Ugandan authorities arrested a number of ADF operatives and issued a warning that extremists were planning a new attack on “important installations.” Thousands of civilians have been killed in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo by the ADF, which was once a Ugandan rebel group. The ADF was officially tied to IS by the US in March. The ADF, according to experts, is the bloodiest of more than 120 armed groups roaming eastern DRC, many of which are remnants of two regional wars a quarter-century ago.