Interpol issues Red alert for the ‘White Widow’ after Nairobi attack

LONDON (TIP): Interpol on Thursday issued an international wanted people alert known as the Red Notice for the arrest of British motherof- three Samantha Lewthwaite for her role in the recent terrorist attack in Nairobi. Known around the world as the “White Widow,” Interpol has circulated the arrest notice to all 190 Interpol member countries including India. Red Notice is one of Interpol’s most powerful tools in tracking international fugitives. The global security watchdog said the notice is being issued at the request of authorities in Kenya. Lewthwaite is the widow of Germaine Lindsay, one of the four bombers involved in the July 7 terror attacks in London in 2005 in which 52 people were killed and many more injured. Lewthwaite is the prime suspect behind the Mumbai-style Nairobi shopping mall massacre which has killed nearly 70 people. Interpol secretary general Ronald K Noble said, “Lewthwaite, aged 29, who is also believed to use the alias ‘Natalie Webb’, is wanted by Kenya on charges of being in possession of explosives and conspiracy to commit a felony dating back to December 2011. By requesting an Interpol red notice, Kenya has activated a global ‘tripwire’ for this fugitive.”

He said that the public’s help in identifying and locating the white widow fugitive was crucial. “Through the notice, Kenyan authorities have ensured that all 190 member countries are aware of the danger posed by this woman, not just across the region but also worldwide,” said the head of Interpol. Containing identification details and judicial information about a wanted person, the red notices communicate to police worldwide that a person is wanted by a member country and request that the suspect be placed under provisional arrest pending extradition. Daughter of a former British soldier, Lewthwaite is one of Al Qaeda’s primary recruiters in east Africa besides being the official spokesperson for the banned outfit Al-Shabaab. On the run for the past year, she is wanted in several countries including UK for terrorist activities. She is originally from Northern Ireland and holds a British passport. The terrorist group has taken responsibility for the Nairobi attack. The Kenyan anti-terrorist police recently revealed a video footage showing a balaclava clad white woman holding a gun and controlling the terrorist operation from within the mall. In a Twitter message later, Al- Shabaab praised the “White Widow” – the mother of three and boasted that she was with them.

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