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Kenya wrongly detaining individuals based on ethnicity warns Human Rights Watch

Kenyan security forces were too slow to respond to attacks on villages and beat Muslims and ethnic Somalis in police custody, found Human Rights Watch,

The Kenya Human Rights Commission and Human Rights Watch (HRW) called the government to increase its oversight of police and military investigations.

The “Insult to Injury: The 2014 Lamu and Tana River Attacks and Kenya’s Abusive Response” report documented assaults in villages between June and July 2014 that lead to the deaths of 87 people.

The report said that hundreds had been beaten and detained without charge, and accused of targeting ethnic communities in response to terror attacks.

The deputy Africa director of HRW, said,

“There’s a pattern here of the authorities scapegoating the wrong targets in their response to terrorist attacks. Whether that’s beating up and rounding up community members because of their ethnicity or their religion.”

The organisations further warned that Kenya’s careless targeting of Muslims in anti-terror measures could drive radicalisation.

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