In Summary
  • Robow - established the first militant Islamist training camp in Somalia in 1996 and reportedly left in 2000 to train with the Taliban in Afghanistan.
  • Godane - held meetings in Somalia to come up with strategies on how to execute attacks in Kenya, leaked NIS report says.
  • Iman - is said to have been controversial since his days at Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology, where he graduated with a degree in engineering.
  • Samantha - British media claim she was involved in the Westgate terrorist attack.
  • Sandheere - is believed to have been the one who escorted the terrorists who attacked the Westgate Mall.

Sheikh Mukhtar Robow alias Abu Mansur

Al-Shabaab deputy leader

A leaked NIS report says Muktar Sheikh Robow and Dahir Aweys arrived in Hela Marer area, Gedo region, from Ufuro area in the Bay region, Somalia, on March 22. 

They held a meeting with 50 other leaders where they discussed the mode of training for their operatives as well as plan on how to carry out attacks on vital installations in Mandera, Wajir, Garissa, Mombasa and Nairobi.

The FBI has put a $5 million bounty on Robow.

Robow, the deputy leader of al-Shabaab, is also a former spokesman for the group.

He was one of the founders of the terror group. He is from Baidoa in the Bay region of Somalia, where his Rahanweyn clan holds overwhelming influence.

Robow established the first militant Islamist training camp in Somalia, al-Hudda, in Huddur in 1996. He reportedly left Somalia in 2000 to train with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

He returned to Somalia after the Taliban fell from power. In 2003, he helped create al-Shabaab from the remnants of al Ittihad al Islami.

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Ahmed Abdi Godane, alias, Mukhtar Abu Zubeyr

Al-Shabaab founder and overall commander

A leaked National Security Intelligence (NIS) report says that early this year Godane held meetings in Somalia to come up with strategies on how to execute attacks in Kenya. The FBI has put a $7 million bounty on him.

Godane, who was born in northern Somalia, now known as Somaliland, has been leading al-Shabaab since 2008.

He studied accounting in Pakistan and while there he occasionally travelled to Afghanistan where he came into contact with al-Qaeda, led by the late Osama bin Laden.

When he returned home he founded the northern wing of Somalia’s al-Ittihad al-Islami (Islamic Union), which was established by Somali Mujahiddins returning from Afghanistan. He was to later start recruiting and indoctrinating the militia who were later to start attacks against Western interests in Somalia, including kidnapping and killing of Western nationals.

Godane was to later join the Council of Islamic Courts before teaming up with Aden Hashi Farah to form al-Shabaab when they split from CIC.

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Sheikh Ahmed Iman Ali

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