US condemns Kenya violence

The US has condemned the “excessive use of force” by Kenya’s security services during a demonstration by opponents of the electoral oversight body, the embassy said.

Police beat some demonstrators with batons and kicked others after firing teargas and water cannon to disperse a crowd outside the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.

Some demonstrators threw stones at police.

“The US deplores the excessive use of force by the Kenyan security services and the violence around the demonstrations,” US ambassador Robert Godec said.

“We welcome announcements by Kenyan authorities that all reports of the excessive use of force will be investigated.”

Kenya does not hold its next presidential and parliamentary polls until August 2017, but politicians are already trying to galvanise their supporters.

More than 1,200 people died after an election in 2007.

A 2013 election passed peacefully, although the opposition disputed the result and said the commission mishandled the voting. It accepted a court ruling that rejected the challenge.

The commission oversees elections in Kenya, including ensuring voter lists are up to date and supervising counting.


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