WASHINGTON — Security reportedly has been heightened at the western Kenya home of Barack Obama's step-grandmother, but the president refuses to comment on the details.
Obama this week told Univision television network, "There are a lot of reports all the time about threat streams to me and my family, so I don't comment on specifics."
The president acknowledged that al-Qaida members may seek revenge after the shooting death of their leader, Osama bin Laden, in a May 2 U.S. Navy SEALs raid he approved.
"That’s something that we have to be vigilant about," Obama said. "And we are monitoring all these situations very carefully."
Sarah Onyango Obama, 88, is the third wife of Obama's paternal grandfather. Although she is not the president's blood relative, he has called her "Granny Sarah."
She lives in Kogelo, a small village about 30 miles west of the Kenyan city of Kisamu.
She reportedly is being threatened by a Somali al-Qaida affiliate called al-Shabab, ABC News reported Friday, but she shrugged off the threat.
"My life has not been affected in any way," Sarah Obama told ABC News. "It has not restricted my movement."
In a May 2 report repeated in Western media, the Africa Review said more police officers were deployed to Sarah Obama's home over fears of a terrorist attack in retaliation for the killing of bin Laden.
Local Police Chief Stephen Cheteka told the African Review police decided to beef-up security for President Obama's relatives after receiving the terror threats.
"We received reports of plans to attack the home of Mama Sarah Obama three days ago and we immediately put in place adequate security measures," Cheteka said.
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The home will be under round-the-clock surveillance and all visitors will be subjected to a thorough screening, he said.
Among the al-Shabab fighters threatening to avenge bin Laden's death is Omar Hammami, known as Abu Mansur al-Amriki, or "the American," who issued new statements Wednesday.
Hammami grew up in the middle-class town of Daphne, Alabama, before joining the militants in 2007.
Al-Shabab carried out its first international attack last July in Uganda, where 76 people watching the World Cup final died in two bomb explosions.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.