Following the high-profile attacks in Kenya by the armed group al-Shabab at the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi in 2013 and at a University in Garissa in 2015, which killed more than 200 people, the Kenyan government has changed the way it deploys ground forces and carries out counter terrorism activities.

The Kenyan army took over control from the Police at the porous border with Somalia.

Since then, Kenyan soldiers have spearheaded an ongoing large-scale operation in the Boni National Reserve, pushing al-Shabab fighters back into Somalia, greatly reducing the group’s capacity to recruit and operate inside Kenya.

For years, the forest in the national park was easy cover for fighters moving between the countries. Analysts say Kenya’s success in taking the fight to al-Shabab has made it a blueprint for dealing with violent groups in the region.

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