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Rights Group Protests Arrests of Kenyan Journalists - 2003-09-30


The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists is calling on Kenyan police to release a newspaper editor detained after his paper published details of a high-profile murder investigation.

David Makali, Sunday editor of the East African Standard, was arrested Monday along with two other editors at the paper, Managing Director Tom Mshindi and Associate Editor Kwamchetsi Makokha.

Mr. Mshindi and Mr. Makokha were released late Monday and told to report to police headquarters Tuesday. But police continued to hold Mr. Makali at an unknown location.

The arrests came after the paper published excerpts of a leaked police report in its Sunday edition. The report contained confessions from the alleged killers of Crispin Odhiambo Mbai, who chaired a committee reviewing the possibility of rewriting Kenya's constitution.

The Committee to Protect Journalists calls Mr. Makali's detention an "unsettling development." It adds that Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki promised to support press freedom during the race up to last year's elections.

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