Investigate police killings of pro-opposition protesters

Anti riot policemen deploy to disperse protesters in Mathare, in Nairobi, Kenya August 12, 2017. REUTERS/

The Kenyan authorities must investigate reports that police shot dead demonstrators protesting against the outcome of the presidential election last night, said Amnesty International today as protesters started gathering again in opposition strongholds.

As celebrations began in pro-government areas after Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner of the presidential election, supporters of opposition leader Raila Odinga poured onto the streets in parts of Nairobi and Kisumu to protest the outcome.

“The Independent Policing and Oversight Authority (IPOA) must immediately launch an independent and effective investigation into reported killings and where there is credible evidence of crimes, those responsible must be brought to justice,” said Muthoni Wanyeki, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.

Police must do everything necessary to protect life in these protests. They should prioritize dialogue and de-escalation

“Everyone has a right to peaceful protest and they must not be hurt, injured or killed for exercising that right.”

Amnesty International has received credible information that one man was shot dead by police in Nairobi’s Kibera slums and at least two others in Kisumu’s Kondele area, while others were injured. There were also confrontations between police and protesters in Mathare and Kariobangi, both in Nairobi.

“Police must do everything necessary to protect life in these protests. They should prioritize dialogue and de-escalation, and only use force and firearms if all peaceful means fail, and only where necessary to protect life,” said Muthoni Wanyeki.

“Use of excessive and disproportionate force is forbidden under Kenyan and international law and must be avoided at all costs.”

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