Kenya military on spot over
By OLIVER MATHENGE and ZULEKHA NATHOO
Monday, July 28 2008
- HRW report says 37 people disappeared after being taken into
- Since 2006, the SLDF has killed more than 600 people.
- Rights body says security operation was necessary, but
criticises methods used.
Human rights organizations are calling on the Kenya Government to
come clean on terror tactics allegedly used to fight insurgents in
Military gives findings on Sabaot militia
Ministers defend army’s role
UN to probe Army role in Mt Elgon
Stop this vendetta against the military
HRW report on torture in Mt Elgon
MSF Report on Mt. Elgon Security Operation
In a published report called “All The Men Have Gone”, Human Rights
Watch claimed that hundreds of men were rounded up and tortured by
Kenyan police and military earlier this year.
The report also claims at least 37 people have “disappeared” after
being taken into custody.
Kenyan police and military forces went into the western Kenyan
area of Mt. Elgon in March after the Sabaot Land Defence Force (SLDF),
a rebel militia group, had been terrorizing villagers for two
“The military operation was necessary,” said Ben Rawlence, a
consultant with Human Rights Watch.
“What we disagree with is the way in which it was done. The reason
why Kenya is a democratic state is because it has laws that need
to be followed.”
The report claims that in an effort to round up all members of the
SLDF, police forces “screened” nearly 4,000 people in the area and
beat hundreds of victims with sticks, chains and rifles.
The report also claims that the bodies of those who died were then
picked up by helicopter and dumped in the nearby forest.
“They cannot get away with this,” said Hassan. “This is not the
1950s. This is not the 60s, 70s or 80s. This is a new season for
Kenya and there has to be accountability.”
Since 2006, the SLDF has killed more than 600 people, kidnapped,
tortured and raped men and women who opposed them or their
political supporters, says the report.
The organization says it gathered information through personal
interviews, field investigations and research from its
counterparts in Kenya.
Other human rights organizations are concerned about the
consequences to Mt. Elgon if the alleged abuses by the government
“To us, this society is traumatized. It’s a society that might
produce warlords so something must be done,” said Taiga Wanyanja,
coordinator for the Mwatikho Torture Survivors Organization.
Human Rights Watch is calling on the United States and the United
Kingdom, both of whom give financial support and training to the
Kenyan military, to suspend their assistance until there is an
independent investigation of these alleged crimes.