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April 10-17, 2015

Media Monitoring Report for Kenya
Posted on April 20, 2015
1. State Owned Media

Kenya 'begins construction' of Somalia security barrier (Standard News, April 16 2015)

  • Kenyan youths have begun construction of a security barrier along the vast and porous border neighbouring war-torn Somalia, although critics have scoffed it cannot work, reports said Thursday.
  • Youths from a government youth training scheme started digging a ditch this week in Kiunga, Kenya's coastal Lamu district, which officials said would stretch for some 700 kilometres (435 miles). "The fence will consist of various obstacles including a ditch and a patrol road," Immigration Services director Gordon Kihalangwa said.
  • Such actions come in reaction to the Garissa massacre, which lead to increase tension in Kenya.

Church opposes amnesty for Al Shabaab followers (Standard Media, April 16, 2015)

  • Christian leaders have opposed the Government's move to give a 10-day amnesty period to radicalised youth ready to denounce the Al-Shabaab terrorist group. The leaders drawn from different churches said the youths do not deserve mercy because they joined the terror group willingly and some of them may have been involved in some of the attacks.
  • This statement comes days after the government promised amnesty to youth who decided to take part of the terror group

Later on, many MPs came out against the amnesty as well.

  • Furthermore, Wednesday, the leaders also opposed closing of the Dadaab refugee camp. Rev Karanja pointed out that refugees are victims of violence and poor governance in their own countries and are not necessarily terrorists, adding that their welfare must be taken into account even as the Government seeks to flush out terrorists.

UN warns Kenya over closing world's biggest refugee camp (Daily Nation, April 14 2015)

  • Ethnicity is more entrenched in the country today than it was two years ago
  • On Sunday, the Kenyan government said it had asked the UN refugee agency to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees from the sprawling Dadaab refugee camp by July in the wake of the Garissa University massacre claimed by Al-Shabaab insurgents from Somalia.
  • The Dadaab refugee camp is the world’s biggest refugee camps
  • UN warns that this could have terrible repercussions
  • The Kenyan government had already sought the closure of Dadaab after the September 2013 Al-Shabaab attack on the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi that left at least 67 people dead, saying the camp was a breeding ground for Islamist militants.

This new decision to close the camp comes in the wake of the Garissa massacre Kenya rights group shutdown 'harming counter-terrorism efforts' (Daily Nation, April 14 2015)

  • Kenyan authorities last week put HAKI Africa and Muslims for Human Rights (MUHURI), two Mombasa-based civil society groups, on a list of 85 individuals and organisations accused of supporting the Islamists.
  • This was condemned by many Human Rights groups
  • The list also froze key money transfer companies vital for impoverished Somalia, was part of a crackdown on alleged Shabaab supporters following the massacre of almost 150 people at Garissa university by the extremists.
  • Kenya has also asked the UN refugee agency to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees by July in the wake of the Garissa university massacre.
Social Media
  • Peace does not come easy & should never be taken for granted especially for a country that has been unstable for long. – President Uhuru Kenyatta (@Ukenyatta), April 14 2015
  • Closing Dadaab is Kenya's way of running away from international obligations. It is the Jubilee leadership sowing seeds of #Xenophobia. – Robert Alai (@RobertAlai)
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