First UK-funded counter-terrorism police unit headquarters opens in Kenya


1. The British High Commissioner, Jane Marriott, and the Cabinet Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs and National Government Coordination, Dr Fred Matiang’i, opened the first Coastal Regional Headquarters and Police Station in Mombasa of the Anti-Terrorist Police Unit (ATPU), worth KES 81 million.


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3. The Commissariat will provide dedicated space for the ATPU to work on terrorism cases. It will also allow direct access to the ATPU for the public, raising awareness of the ATPU’s work and strengthening its relationship with the local community.

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4. Respect for human rights and international standards, such as the Mandela Rules, were central to the design of the building. The station includes a secure detention center with separate cells and private ablution services for men, women and children. This demonstrates the UK’s and Kenya’s shared commitment to the rule of law and international human rights.

5. The British High Commissioner to Kenya, Jane Marriott, said:

6. “Kenya is the UK’s main security partner in East Africa. One of the main objectives of this partnership is to strengthen counter-terrorism capacity within the criminal justice system, in accordance with international human rights standards. The UK works with stakeholders all along the criminal justice pathway, including investigators, detention monitors, prosecutors and the judiciary, all of whom are essential to preventing and disrupting terrorist activity.

seven. “Terrorism is one of the greatest threats our countries face. To counter this threat, I am delighted to support Kenya with around KES 1 billion. [£7m] one year.”

8. Home Office Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i said:

9. “As Government we applaud the UK-Kenya Security Compact agreed in 2018 and the incorporation of the UK-Kenya Strategic Partnership 2020-2025, through which the British High Commission has worked with the Government of Kenya to establish this modern and objective- built a police station with a detention center for the ATPU coast in Mombasa.

ten. “With the help of our partners, we have steadily increased our capabilities to fight terrorism and other transnational crimes. We are immensely grateful to the people of the United Kingdom, through the British High Commission (Nairobi), for our warm and friendly working relationship and in particular on the fight against terrorism”.

11. “The building has state-of-the-art rooms including storage areas, a conference room, a computer room, a server area, an armory, a CCTV room, 9 holding cells for men, women and minors, all equipped with beds fixed, a modern bathroom and proper ventilation.”

12. Over the past year, the UK has supported the ATPU with a number of activities, including terrorist financing training, witness interviews, improvised explosive devices, gender sensitivity and delivering an internationally accredited train-the-trainer program. In the future, we are happy to continue supporting specialist training in this building.

13. The building has spaces dedicated to the different teams of the ATPU (investigations, analysis of evidence and forensics), allowing them to work together under one roof. It also has a multi-agency room allowing the ATPU to invite and work closely with other national security agencies and international partners in a secure environment. A training room is also available to facilitate the integration of the ATPU’s key skills into its staff.

14. More information

15. As the closest partner in the fight against terrorism in East Africa, the UK stands with Kenya in our common fight against terrorism. The UK spends around KES 1.1 billion (£7 million) a year to support Kenya’s Counter Terrorism (CT) efforts. The support of TC from the UK in Kenya is considerable. We work closely with the Ministry of Home Affairs to build the capacity of criminal justice institutions through training and mentorship, and by strengthening Kenya’s CT infrastructure, for example through the establishment of the Kahawa Law Court , Kenya’s first court dedicated to combating terrorism offences. . In February 2022, the British High Commissioner handed over essential forensic medical equipment to the Chief Secretary for Administration of the Ministry of Health, Dr Rashid Aman, to improve disaster response and support investigations forensic. integrates political, diplomatic and development approaches. Recently, we worked to reduce the vulnerability to radicalization of 800 at-risk Kenyans through engagement with communities and civil society organizations. The UK is also supporting improved maritime and aviation safety standards through technical assistance to the Department of Transport and Port Authorities.


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