News / Africa

Kenya Riots Over Slain Muslim Cleric Turn Deadly

Policeman armed with pistol and tear gas patrols while firemen extinguish fire set by rioting youth at Salvation Army Church, Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 4, 2013.
Policeman armed with pistol and tear gas patrols while firemen extinguish fire set by rioting youth at Salvation Army Church, Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 4, 2013.
Four people have died and at least seven have been hopitalized in riots that erupted in the Kenyan port city of Mombasa after gunmen shot and killed a popular Muslim cleric and three of his associates.

Rioters burned tires and set fire to a church in unrest that erupted in the wake of Friday afternoon prayers one day after unidentified attackers opened fire on Sheikh Ibrahim Amor and the three other men as they traveled home after delivering sermons at Musa Mosque.
 
Witnesses say police fired tear gas on Friday and engaged in running battles with Muslim youth in the coastal city's impoverished Majengo neighborhood.
 
Sheikh Amor was viewed as a successor to Aboud Rogo Mohammed, who preached at the same mosque and was accused by U.S. and U.N. officials of having links to the Somali militant group al-Shabab.
 
Rights activists accuse Kenyan security forces of targeting and killing alleged Islamist radicals and terrorist suspects, and riots erupted after Rogo was fatally shot in 2012 on the same road where Amor was killed.
 
Security officials have accused Sheikh Amor of radicalizing young people into terrorism, but police deny killing him, and Mombasa police commander, Robert Kitur, called the situation calm.
 
“They tried to burn some tires but the situation is calm on the ground," he said. "They attempted to burn one of the churches, the Salvation Army, but we have put out the fire.”
 
Local witnesses say police have been deployed to guard churches in areas hit by rioting.
 
Speaking to reporters outside Jamia Mosque in Nairobi after Friday prayers, Al Amin Kimathi, head of the Muslim Human Rights Forum, condemned the killing of the four men and accused Kenyan security forces of being behind the attack.
 
“We say this is savage attack, barbaric to the extreme and patently against all laws of this land and in total violation of all norms and human rights," he said. "We say this is a continuation of the extra-judicial killings that have occurred over the last two years.” 
 
Kenya police say they have not made any arrests in connection with the killing of Sheikh Amor or his associates, but that the investigation is ongoing.
 
Tensions have been high in Kenya since al-Shabab militants stormed a Nairobi mall in a violent attack and subsequent siege that left 72 people dead, including five of the gunmen.

  • A man throws a bucket of water to put out flames from a tire set on fire in a street by rioting youths, Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 4, 2013.
  • Firemen put out a fire in the Salvation Army Church after it was set on fire by rioting youths, Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 4, 2013.
  • An armed Kenyan police officer patrols near the Masjid Musa Mosque, where Muslim cleric Sheikh Ibrahim Ismael who was killed Thusday night preached, following rioting after Friday prayers, Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 4, 2013.
  • A man uses his mobile phone next to the vehicle in which Sheikh Ibrahim Ismael and three others were killed near Mombasa, Kenya, Oct. 3, 2013.

You May Like

Islamic State Survivor: A Yazidi Girl's Tale

Sarah Said Haydar, captured a year ago while fleeing Islamic State onslaught in northern Iraq, was so traumatized by militants, she sought to end her own life More

EU, US Applaud Kosovo Law on Special Court

Joint statement says lawmakers' decision to address allegations of war crimes 'demonstrated their commitment to the rule of law and to honor international agreements' More

ASEAN Ministers to Push for S. China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Elly from: Kenya
October 05, 2013 12:28 AM
Kill all the criminals

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
October 04, 2013 12:06 PM
A cleric is killed, and so Kenya is at war? The whole world shouldn't catch. What about hundreds of sane people killed in predominantly muslim countries and societies? For the mere fact that western education is opening the eyes of school graduate in Africa, causing many to jettison a religion they know very little about, boko haram,el shaabab,al qaida in the magreb, tuareg fighters, etc. have turned parts of the continent to war front. Innocent children are killed, teachers are slaughtered like farm animals, security operatives have been hunted like criminals, yet no one is making a noise about this evil. What makes a muslim important, or more important than any other?

It is wrong to kill people, but do muslims understand the importance of other peoples' lives once they are gone for jihad? In civil societies of today, even the law respects lives of even criminals and spare them, but muslims take lives at abandon as if they can create one, and when they are paid in their own coin, they start rioting. The world will not listen to their cry of wolf until they learn to respect lives. While no one encourages taking of innocent lives in any form of killing, it is wise to remind the muslims to come out of their timidity, open their religion up to discussion and let superior views carry the day.

They cannot close up their gates and expect others to comply with their needs. What is good for the goose is also good for the gander. Other people also have blood running in the veins not water. It is because muslims always like to kill that they are sometimes killed in order to save the life of anyone who might be unjustly accused of blasphemy or any other law of sharia, even when the person is not a muslim. That must stop.
In Response

by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
October 05, 2013 5:01 AM
Dividing narrowly your world into two opposing sects: on one hand you branded all Muslims as terrorists, savages, murderers and prehistoric wild animals, while on the other hand you marked all non Muslims as civilised, peace-loving and victims of terrorism. This is an antiquated story.

In black Africans killing do happen on tribal line. Kenya's current president, it's deputy president and well-known journalist were all indicted for war crimes. They were accused of killing opposing tribes. That's exactly what happened In Rwanda, Sudan, DRC, Nigeria etc. Boko Haram and Al-Shabab are a relatively recent phenomenon. majority of Muslims do not agree with them.
Not only Muslims but also Christians do not appreciate opening their religion up to critical discussions. Because both religion's principal are not based on careful reasoning.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Cambodia Makes Progress Curbing Bear Tradei
X
Robert Carmichael
August 04, 2015 3:07 PM
Cambodia’s wild bears are under unprecedented pressure. Their native forests are being cut down at record rates, and China's huge demand for traditional medicine has made them targets. But experts say Cambodia's conservation efforts are setting an example that has put it well ahead of its neighbors in protecting bears. Robert Carmichael reports for VOA from Phnom Penh.
Video

Video Cambodia Makes Progress Curbing Bear Trade

Cambodia’s wild bears are under unprecedented pressure. Their native forests are being cut down at record rates, and China's huge demand for traditional medicine has made them targets. But experts say Cambodia's conservation efforts are setting an example that has put it well ahead of its neighbors in protecting bears. Robert Carmichael reports for VOA from Phnom Penh.
Video

Video Growing Number of E. Jerusalem Palestinians Seek Israeli Citizenship

Most Palestinians living in East Jerusalem have long rejected the option of full Israeli citizenship, seeing it as a betrayal to their political cause - the formation of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital. But as that dream remains elusive, more and more Palestinians are applying for Israeli citizenship. Zlatica Hoke reports the decision is hard for many Palestinians who say they have to be pragmatic about it.
Video

Video With No Money, More Students, African Universities Struggle

Academics from around the African continent converged in Johannesburg last week for the African Universities Summit, a chance to tackle some of the major issues facing higher education in Africa today. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Wisconsin's Voter ID Law Still Mired In Controversy

Voter ID laws have sparked controversy across the US. More than 30 states enacted laws requiring citizens to show identification before they vote. Against fierce opposition, the state of Wisconsin recently enacted one the most restrictive voter ID laws in country. As Jeff Swicord reports, no one can predict its impact as the 2016 election nears.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Hailed as Highly Effective

At last, there's a way to end the suffering from the Ebola epidemic that has ravaged West Africa for more than a year. Researchers say the vaccine is so effective, there may never be a major outbreak of Ebola again. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs