Kenya sets fire to 5,000 illegal weapons in crime fight

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Kenya destroyed some 5,250 illegal firearms by fire on Tuesday as part of efforts to fight crimes like cattle rustling, carjackings and to eliminate threats from terrorism.

The burning destroyed weapons confiscated by law enforcement officials or voluntarily surrendered to agents collecting illegal small arms and light weapons.

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Kenya sets fire to 5,000 illegal weapons in crime fight
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Kenya sets fire to 5,000 illegal weapons in crime fight

An assortment of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations burns during its destruction in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Kenya's Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery inspects an assortment of guns during a public destruction of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

A pile of 5,250 illegal weapons are burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A man throws a torch to set light to a pile of 5,250 illegal weapons as they are burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A policeman and a local administration official watch as an assortment of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations burns during its destruction in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

A man pours fuel on a pile of 5,250 illegal weapons before they were burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A photographer takes pictures of a pile of 5,250 illegal weapons as they are burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A pile of 5,250 illegal weapons before they were burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A policeman watches as an assortment of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations burns during its destruction in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

People watch before a pile of 5,250 illegal weapons are burned by Kenyan police in Ngong, near Nairobi, in Kenya Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. The weapons consisted of both confiscated and surrendered firearms that had been stockpiled over almost a decade and were destroyed by police as a message to the public to surrender others.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

A worker arranges an assortment of guns during a public destruction of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

An assortment of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations is arranged in different stock-piles before its destruction in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

An assortment of 5250 illicit firearms and small weapons, recovered during various security operations burns during its destruction in Ngong hills near Kenya's capital Nairobi, November 15, 2016.

(REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya)

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"Here in Kenya, small arms are implicated in many deaths, in acts of armed violence, among them inter community conflicts, cattle rustling, violent crimes and poaching," Deputy President William Ruto said before the weapons were set ablaze.

"Their presence has also intensified the threats posed by transnational crimes such as terrorism, human trafficking, piracy and drug trafficking," he said in a speech.

Somalia's al Shabaab, which seeks to overthrow the country's Western-backed government and impose a strict version of sharia law, has carried out regular assaults in neighboring Kenya in recent years as retaliation for Kenya contributing troops to an African Union peacekeeping force in Somalia.

Kenya last burnt a similar collection of illegal weapons in 2003, 2005 and 2010.

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