Defence assistant minister David Musila said on Thursday the Armed Forces were ready to defend the country from foreign aggression. However, he said, the orders could only be issued by the President, who is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The international norms on military deployment are very categorical. You cannot cross an international border without the orders of the Commander-In-Chief, he said. He added: As and when those orders are given by the Commander-In-Chief, our forces will move in. They are ready at any time to defend the integrity of our borders. Mr Musila spoke a day after Prime Minister Raila Odinga accused the military of failing to protect Kenyans from external aggression along its problematic borders with Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia and Somalia. Citing the recent attacks in Turkana, where 20 Kenyans were killed by Merille tribesmen from Ethiopia, the PM said the military, not the police, should be blamed. The responsibility of protecting our borders is that of the military and not the police. We spend a lot of money on the military. We recruit, we train, we promote and maintain them until retirement when there is no war. Therefore, when people invade our territory, there should be no question on who should be responsible, he said. The PM, who was issuing a statement on security in Todonyang, Turkana North District, said that specific instructions had been given to the Defence ministry to safeguard Kenya from external aggression on all fronts, including Migingo and Ugingo islands. MPs accused the government of being too soft on aggressors, and demanded immediate action to kick out the Merilles and Ugandan forces from Migingo. Kenyas relations with Uganda were strained two years ago after Kampala sent soldiers to Migingo Island on Lake Victoria, resulting in a protracted border dispute. On Thursday, Mr Musila said the military had not been deployed in Turkana as that would have amounted to a declaration of war on Ethiopia, whose tribesmen have invaded Kenyan territory. For the military to go to an international border, it would mean a declaration of war on a neighbour. We are careful and it will be done within international norms of deploying armed forces, he said. Such an act, said the Mwingi South MP, will cause tension and turn Uganda, Sudan and Ethiopia into hostile neighbours. He said this was largely the reason the government always deployed the police and General Service Unit to contain tensions on the border. We rely on the police and the GSU to contain the situation within our borders, he said. Mr Musila said the soldiers sent to the border with Somalia had eliminated threats by the al Shabaab militia. The troops are on round-the-clock surveillance comprising air and ground forces, pushing the militia further into Somalia. There is no immediate threat from the al Shabaab. Our borders are being patrolled day and night both by air and land forces, he said. Mr Musila said the campaign will continue to smoke out all militants who had sneaked into the country. The Somali border is now safe. The clean-up is going on and we have contained the situation. The al Shabaab are now in Somalia but we are alert, he said. Daily Nation: - News |Army awaits Kibaki orders to hit raiders tunafaa kunyorosha hii watu tu set an example to expansionist neighbours like Museveni.