45 dead in fresh violence in Kenya; 61 arrested



AGENCIES

Published — Monday 24 December 2012

Last update 24 December 2012 4:50 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

HONOLULU/NAIROBI: President Barack Obama has condemned violence in Kenya that left at least 45 people dead in renewed fighting between farming and herding communities that have a history of violent animosity.
The White House said in a statement that Obama urged the Kenyan government and police, along with leaders from the Orma and Pokomo communities, to end a deadly cycle of conflict.
At least 45 people were killed early yesterday when farmers from the Pokomo tribe raided an Orma village of cattle herders in southeastern Kenya. The violence appears to be driven by competition for water, pasture and other resources in the Tana River Delta.
The two groups have fought for years over access to grazing, farmland and water, but human rights activists blame the latest violence on politicians seeking to drive away parts of the local population they believe will vote for rivals in national elections due in March.
Kenyan police said yesterday they have meanwhile arrested 61 suspects behind the brutal attack in which villagers were hacked to death and their homes torched in yesterday's attack on Kipao village in the Tana River delta region. The area was also the scene of a deadly tribal violence earlier this year that had killed another 100 people.
Police attributed the killings to a disarmament operation in the area but the violence could also be linked to the election being held next March, the first since Kenya was gripped by deadly inter-ethnic killings after a December 2007 vote.
Police said the dead in Kipao included 16 children, five women and 10 men, along with 14 assailants.
"This latest incident represents a disturbing escalation of the tragic violence witnessed by these communities in August and September," White House spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement.
"With historic elections approaching in March, peace and stability are essential to Kenya's continued progress," Carney said.
Kenya votes on March 4 in its first election since the disputed 2007 vote, which led to the worst inter-ethnic violence since independence with more than 1,100 people killed and hundreds of thousands displaced.
Two of the candidates running for the presidency are Prime Minister Raila Odinga, who lost his bid in the 2007 vote, and Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, who has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for his alleged role in the violence, which shattered Kenya's image as a beacon of regional stability.
Hamisi Abdul, an Orma, said of the attack by the Pokomo: "They hacked everyone they came across with machetes and spears and shot indiscriminately at us, even as we scampered to seek safety in the bushes. It was confusion. We didn't know which direction they were coming from." Abdul, 27, is in hospital nursing two bullet wounds on his left arm and shoulder.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: A Saudi citizen was killed in shelling fired across the border from Yemen into the southwest of Saudi Arabia on Sunday, local media reported.A shell fell on a house around dawn in Najran province, civil defense department spokesman Ali bin Om...
JEDDAH: Female voters in Al-Ahsa have urged the authorities handling the municipal elections to drop the condition of presenting the national identity card while enrolling themselves in the voters’ list. Some women in Madinah too have appealed for mo...
JEDDAH: After the recent incident of a rat eating from a bowl at a well-known food outlet in a Jeddah mall came to light, residents have called for food hygiene ratings of restaurants and roadside eateries across the city.Although the municipality wo...
JEDDAH: A muezzin (one who recites the Adhaan) of a Riyadh mosque recently sprung a surprise in the Austrian tourist town of Zell am See by his Adhaan after taking permission from members of a musical band.Social media is abuzz with the news and vide...
RIYADH: A Sri Lankan national, who works as a cleaner in the Kingdom, was commended and rewarded by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) for returning a bag containing gold to its owner.“Prince Sultan bin Salman, president o...
RIYADH: Bangladesh State Minister for Foreign Affairs Mohammed Shahriar Alam arrived in Jeddah on Sunday to meet with his Saudi counterpart Nizar Madani on Monday.On arrival at the royal terminal, the minister was received by Director General of the...
RIYADH: A report of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage predicts the rate of growth in job opportunities in the country's tourism sector between 2010 and 2020 will be 10 percent a year as compared to a global growth rate of 2.5 per...
JEDDAH: Two million meningitis vaccines have been distributed among health centers in 20 governorates and provinces across the Kingdom for domestic Haj pilgrims.It is mandatory for all pilgrims to be vaccinated against meningitis and for those coming...
JEDDAH: The Makkah governorate has announced four new road projects linking Makkah and Jeddah. The new roads will facilitate smoother and faster travel between the cities.An estimated 35 million people will benefit from the projects, which will inclu...
JEDDAH: A major disaster is waiting to happen in the fish market of Madinah because of the callous attitude of traders toward handling of gas cylinders. A visit to the market presents a dreadful picture of cylinders kept on top of each other without...
JEDDAH: Information and Culture Minister Adel Al-Toraifi has approved the appointment of Khalid Bo-Ali as editor in chief of the Eastern Province-based Alsharq Arabic newspaper. He was nominated for the post by the board of directors of the newspaper...
JEDDAH: Jamil Farsi, head of the Gold and Jewelry Committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), says he expects 3,000 job opportunities to be created for Saudi women in the jewelry design and gold sector across the Kingdom, with ab...
JEDDAH: More than 50 visually challenged people successfully performed Umrah with the help of the Ebsar Foundation for the Visually Impaired and the Ambassadors of Volunteers organization under their program “Umrah for the visually impaired,” which w...
JEDDAH: Although the Ministry of Labor is opening its doors to receive complaints from private sector employees, many Saudi females employed in cosmetic and perfume shops in Madinah are not making complaints about being overworked due to fear of losi...
JEDDAH: Health Minister Dr. Khaled Al-Falih is set to increase the number of beds in all private sector hospitals, as per new implementation regulations adopted this year.The move will help address the problem of delays in public sector projects, as...

Stay Connected

Facebook