Kenyan police say 15 killed in
Rift Valley attack
03. March 2008
NAIROBI (AFP) - At least 15 people were killed and several wounded
when raiders attacked overnight a village in Kenya's Rift Valley,
which has been widely affected by post-electoral violence, police
"A total of 15 people died: six burnt in their houses, six hacked
with machetes and three shot dead," a police commander said after
the attack that occurred in the western Rift Valley's Trans Nzoia
The killings are the first since last Thursday when President Mwai
Kibaki signed a power-sharing agreement with opposition leader
Raila Odinga, aimed at settling their political dispute, which led
to partly ethnic violence that claimed at least 1,500 lives and
displaced hundreds of thousands.
Both leaders called for an end to the attacks and revenge killings
that had convulsed the country, undermining its reputation as a
base of stability in a region blighted by conflicts.
Police said the Trans Nzoia attackers pounced on their victims,
who were sleeping overnight and carried out systematic attacks.
"They (attackers) were armed with machetes and guns. They were
knocking on houses and ordering people out before they slashed
them," said a local police commander.
"It was horrifying. These people (attackers) were merciless. They
burnt people alive. Aout 10 houses were razed," said another
officer, who asked not to be named.
Area police chief Bernard Muli and District Commissioner Francis
Mutie visited the scene of the carnage to co-ordinate security
operations, officials said.
The Kenyan violence started after Odinga accused Kibaki of
stealing the December 27 presidential elections. International
monitors said the poll was marred by widespread irregularities.
The crisis tapped into simmering resentment over land, poverty and
the dominance of the Kikuyu, Kibaki's people, in Kenyan politics
and business since independence in 1963.
Besides the civilian toll, the crisis also affected the economy,
particularly weakening the key tourism and agriculture, which both
sides have pledged to rebuild.