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Kenyans call for an end to bloodshed

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Kenyans call for an end to bloodshed

Post by shammy on Wed Jan 30, 2008 1:51 pm

30th January,2008

Kenyans pleaded on Wednesday for an end to violence that has killed 850 people and created unprecedented horror in the east African nation's darkest moment since 1963 independence.

Protests over President Mwai Kibaki's disputed re-election in a December 27 election have degenerated into cycles of killing between rival tribes, and there is increasing evidence of gangs being well organised on both sides.

"Peace", "Love", "Sorry", read cards on wreaths of flowers among dozens starting to be laid by peace activists and other concerned citizens at Nairobi's "Freedom Corner" in the centre of the capital.

"Stop The Killing Now," read another.

The violence has taken the lid off decades-old divisions between communities over land, wealth and power that hark back to British colonial rule and have been stoked by politicians at election time over 44 years of independence.

Former U.N. chief Kofi Annan was planning to stage a second day of talks between Kenya's feuding political rivals to try to halt the bloodshed after bringing them together on Tuesday.

Used to their nation being seen as a relatively peaceful haven in a turbulent region, Kenyans are aghast at scenes of people being hacked, burned or clubbed to death in Nairobi slums and around the volatile Rift Valley.

More than 250,000 people are living as refugees -- a sad irony not lost on Kenyans more used to receiving the displaced from war-torn neighbours like Sudan and Somalia.

Many blame President Mwai Kibaki and opposition Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga for unleashing the chaos by failing to reconcile their political differences more quickly, and then not standing up to stop the violence.


Video: Kenya violence creates refugees


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