• Friday, March 06, 2009

    Kenya: BBC interview about assassinations in Kenya with the UN Special Rapporteur

    The UN Special Rapporteur spoke on the BBC’s “Focus on Africa” program about the assassinations on 5 March 2009 in Nairobi of two human rights defenders.

  • Thursday, March 05, 2009

    Kenya: Two prominent human rights defenders assassinated in Nairobi

    The UN Special Rapporteur issued a press release in response to the assassination on 5 March 2009 of two prominent human rights defenders in Nairobi.

    The two men - Mr Oscar Kamau Kingara and Mr John Paul Oulu - worked for the Oscar Foundation, a human rights organisation providing free legal aid services to the poor. The Special Rapporteur met with them two weeks earlier during his February 2009 fact-finding mission to Kenya to discuss the issue of killings by police.

    The Special Rapporteur called for the Government of Kenya to ensure that an independent investigation was carried out, by bringing in an independent team from Scotland Yard or the South African Police.

  • Wednesday, December 31, 1969

    Kenya: Diplomats and civil society support UN Special Rapporteur’s preliminary findings

    On 26 February 2009, a group of heads of diplomatic missions in Kenya (Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America) issued a joint statement welcoming the Special Rapporteur’s preliminary findings and recommendations. The full statement is available below.

    On 27 February 2009, twelve Kenyan NGOs released a joint statement in support of the Special Rapporteur’s preliminary findings and recommendations, and urging the Government to take action. The NGOs were: the Independent Medico-Legal Unit, Kenya Human Rights Commission, International Commission of Jurists-Kenya Section, Africa Center for Open Governance, Release Political Prisoners Trust, Haki Focus, Law Society of Kenya, Christian Legal Education Aid and Research, Amnesty International-Kenya Section, Legal Resources Foundation, Kituo cha Sheria, and Kenyans for Peace, Truth and Justice. The full statement is available below.

  • Friday, March 06, 2009

    Kenya: US ambassador and Kenyan PM call for independent investigations into assassinations

    The US Ambassador to Kenya, Michael E Ranneberger, called for Kenya to carry out independent investigations into the assassinations last night of two human rights defenders in Nairobi. He offered to Kenya the assistance of the FBI to independently investigate the killings.

    The Prime Minister of Kenya, Raila Odinga, also called for independent investigations. His statement is available in full below.

    On 5 March 2009, the UN Special Rapporteur called for comprehensive investigations into the two murders, and urged assistance from another country to ensure the independence of the investigations.

  • Sunday, March 01, 2009

    Kenya: Special Rapporteur gives a "devastating verdict" after visit

    The Special Rapporteur, in a press statement concluding his visit to Kenya, available here, called for the removal from office of the Kenyan Commissioner of Police and the resignation of the Attorney General, because of their responsibility for impunity for killings. Former Attorney General Charles Ngongo, speaking to Citizen News of Kenya in a video report available here called the Rapporteur’s statement “a devastating verdict” against the the two public figures and says that if he were in their position he would resign. Ngongo additionally argued that they should step aside to facilitate independent investigations. A police spokesman responds that, notwithstanding the Special Rapporteur's criticism of the police, there was no direct evidence linking officers to killings. Several Government officials defended the Police Commissioner and the Attorney General and accused the Special Rapporteur of impinging on the sovereignty of Kenya.

    Subsequently, on 9 September 2009 Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki announced that the Police Commissioner Major General Hussein Ali was to be reassigned to the head of the Kenyan Postal Corporation.

    The Special Rapporteur's full report on his mission to Kenya is available here.