Ugandan army discovers training facility for ADF rebels

The ADF reportedly carried out a series of bombings in Kampala and elsewhere last November, which killed at least nine people.

Uganda’s military says it has discovered bomb-making material at a training facility for a rebel group allied to ISIL (ISIS) about 60km (37 miles) west of the capital, Kampala, and that three people had been arrested.

The revelation was made by army spokesman Felix Kulayigye on Thursday during a media tour of the village of Kikubajinja in Luwero district.

Authorities blamed the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a militia based in the dense forests in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo, for a series of bombings in Kampala and elsewhere last November, which killed at least nine people.

In one of the worst attacks, a suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance of a police station in the centre of Kampala. Three minutes later, two other suicide bombers detonated along a road that leads to the parliament.

The training facility was found at the home of a local and a tunnel used for training had been dug in one of the rooms, Kulayigye said.

Security personnel had become suspicious after reports emerged from neighbours that “nobody was allowed to enter, nobody would be seen getting out”, the army spokesman said.

Authorities recovered bomb-making materials including metal, nails and wires as well as bullets and a pistol fitted with a silencer, he said.

In November, the Ugandan army began a joint operation with the Congolese army to root out the ADF, which started as an uprising in Uganda but has been based in the DRC since the late 1990s. It pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in mid-2019.

Kulayigye said the three suspects had already bought a car they planned to use in an attack.

“They were in the process of assembling a bomb which would be taken by that car to explode in a public place,” he said.

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