Youth protest 'arrest' of Muslim cleric in Kenya

Oct 25, 2013, 11:41 AM EDT

MOMBASA, Kenya (AP) — An official says police have fired tear gas to disperse stone throwing youths who are protesting the alleged arrest of a Muslim cleric in Kenya's coastal town of Mombasa.

Coastal region police chief Aggrey Adoli denied that police arrested Sheik Ramadhan Juma, who preached at the Masjid Musa Mosque.

Mombasa police chief Kipkemboi Rop said police fired tear gas as Muslim youth blocked the road outside the mosque following Friday prayers. Kenya Red Cross reported running battles between police and youth Thursday night near the mosque after the alleged arrest.

Ali Bashir, a resident, says he saw police put Juma into a car.

Two of Juma's colleagues, who also preached at the Masjid Musa Mosque, were gunned down in separate attacks at the same spot in just over a year.