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Kenya: Police Accused of Abuse in Garissa Operation

RebelsA Human Rights organization has criticized the ongoing security operation in Garissa. The Northern Forum for Democracy has accused police officers of violating human rights during the operation to flush out terrorists in the county.

Khalif Abdi Farah, the organization’s coordinator alleged that police are harassing, beating locals and even looting their property under the guise of looking for criminals.

“It is very unfortunate that whenever something happens in Garissa and security officers decide to carry out an operation, it is the innocent people who end up suffering while the real culprits roam freely.How do they expect to win the confidence of the people to provide them with information if they continue doing this,”said Khalif.

North Eastern PPO Charles Mureithi has however dismissed the accusation stating that police officers have acted humanely while carrying out the operation.

The government announced the massive operation following the killing of ten people in a hotel in Garissa on Thursday last week. Four people were also injured during the incident.

Speaking during a tour of the area with top security officials on Saturday, Internal Security Permanent Secretary, Mutea Iringo said the operation will be carried out in a bid to restore order in the town.

Irigo also announced the interdiction of security and administrative officers in Garissa . Iringo said the officers are suspected to have been involved in unlawful activities in the area and have been removed from office to pave way for investigations.

“Similar action will be taken against customs officers involved in illegal activities,” warned Iringo after returning to Nairobi from Garissa where he led a high level security team to assess the growing levels of insecurity.

A curfew has also been imposed in the town with boda boda operators and taxi-drivers only being allowed to operate only between 6am and 6pm.

The government is also offering a cash reward of between Sh50,000 to Sh100,000 to any member of the public who can provide information on criminal gangs operating in the town.



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