News / Africa

39 Dead Following Ethnic Clashes in Kenya

Gabe Joselow
— Authorities in Kenya say at least 39 people  - 30 villagers and nine attackers - have been killed in fresh clashes between two rival ethnic groups in the southeastern Tana River region.

The violence started in the early morning hours Friday when members of the Pokomo community, armed with guns and spears, attacked Orma residents in the village of Kipao.

Kenya Red Cross spokesperson Nelly Muluka says disaster response teams have been deployed to the area.

“So it is last night that we got a call to respond, that is toward this morning at four a.m., and at the moment, as Kenya Red Cross, we are on the ground tending to casualties, most of them with serious injuries,” said Muluka.

The Red Cross says five women and five children were among those killed in the attack.

Muluka says many homes were also burned during the raid.

"We’re talking about over 45 houses burnt, over 30 casualties, the situation is still tense and we have a group from Nairobi led by our secretary general that has just arrived at Tana Delta and casualties are being transported for more attention,” Muluka added.

This is the latest episode of violence between the Pokomo farming community and Orma herders, who have historically fought over resources.

But the violence has intensified this year.  More than 110 people were killed in clashes between the two communities in September and October.

A Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the Tana River clashes has heard evidence that the violence is politically motivated, possibly due to redistricting in the area.

Defense Minister Yusuf Haji has been questioned by the commission following accusations that he had a hand in the violence, a charge he denies.  And a member of parliament, Dhadho Ghodana, was arrested in September and charged with incitement.

As Kenya prepares for general elections in March, Red Cross officials are warning that inter-ethnic fighting this year has been worse than in the run-up to the last election in 2007.  Violence that followed that disputed vote left more than 1,100 people dead and displaced hundreds of thousands more.

You May Like

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

Analysts say move by President Xi is an effort to win more party support, take step toward economic reforms, removing those who would stand in way of change More

South Africa Land Reforms Still Contentious 20 Years Later

Activists argue that the pace of land reform is slow and biased; legal experts question how some proposed reforms would be implemented More

In Vietnam, Religious Freedoms Violated, UN Finds

Beliefs reportedly prompt heavy surveillance, intimidation and travel restrictions More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelteri
X
Scott Bobb
July 30, 2014 8:16 PM
Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video A Summer Camp for All the World

VIDEO: During workshops and social gatherings, the Global Youth Village summer camp encourages young people to cooperate and embrace their differences, while learning to communicate with people from other countries. VOA's Deborah Block has more.
Video

Video From Cantankerous Warlock to Incorruptible Priest, 'Harry Potter' Actor Embraces Diverse Roles

He’s perhaps best known as Mad Eye Moody, the whimsical wizard in the Harry Potter franchise. But character actor Brendan Gleeson's resume includes dozens of films, and he embraces all the characters he inhabits with equal passion. In an interview with VOA’s Penelope Poulou, Gleeson discussed his new drama "Calvary" and his secret to success.

AppleAndroid