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Monday, December 31, 2007

Kenya protesters allege fraud in presidential election
Mike Rosen-Molina at 4:14 PM ET

[JURIST] At least 185 people were killed in Kenya [JURIST news archive] as demonstrations against alleged election fraud continued Monday. Protests began Sunday when tens of thousands of opposition supporters took to the streets, accusing Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki [official profile] of electoral fraud and vote-rigging after Kibaki won a narrow victory in Sunday's presidential election. The controversial vote has sparked simmering ethnic tensions in the country, where Kibaki has long been accused of using his position to favor members of the majority Kikuyu tribe. Fueling accusations of malfeasance, Kibaki won the election despite early opinion polls that placed rival candidate Raila Odinga [campaign website] in the lead. Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement [party website] also won a majority of parliamentary seats in Thursday's parliamentary election.

Also on Monday, Reporters without Borders criticized [statement text] a Sunday decision by the Kenyan government to ban media coverage of the election protests [Reuters report]. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour also expressed concern [OHCHR report] at the ban and called on the government to observe its human rights obligations in dealing with protest violence. Unconfirmed reports published on Odinga's website Monday said that the head of the Kenyan armed forces has been dismissed and that the head of police has resigned. AFP has more. AP has additional coverage.

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