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Give up arms or face full force, Uhuru tells Mandera, Wajir leaders

Monday, June 24, 2013

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President Kenyatta vows to order use of force unless peace is restored in Mandera and Wajir; asks residents to immediately surrender arms.

Meeting leaders from the two counties at State House, Nairobi on Monday, the President said the Government will take stern action against those who continue to fuel hostilities.

More than 22 people were killed and several others injured over the weekend in clashes between the Garreh and Degodia clans in Mandera and Wajir counties.

President Kenyatta directed the immediate surrender and mop up of illegal arms, warning that if peace is not restored, the Government will have no choice but to mount an all-out security operation that may have unintended consequences.

“If the hostilities do not end, we will have no otherwise but to move in with full force,” President Kenyatta said, adding that the killings of innocent children, women and the elderly cannot be tolerated.

The Head of State said his Government will engage the Ethiopian Government to ensure the peaceful co-existence of all communities along the common border.

The President also warned chiefs in Mandera and Wajir counties that they will be held responsible if they fail to take action and provide adequate and timely information that will help in containing acts of breach of peace.

If peace is not restored, the Government will have no choice but to mount an all-out security operation that may have unintended consequences - President Kenyatta

While the Government does its part, President Kenyatta said he expects the leaders from both communities to impress on the two clans to co-exist peacefully as Kenyans.

Saying that the people who perpetrate the hostilities live among the communities, the Head of State said it was within the ability of the local leaders to end the violence.

The President added that the Government will accord the leaders all the necessary help required in ending the hostilities and directed the Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Coordination of National Government, Mr Joseph ole Lenku who was present, to immediately take the necessary steps in this regard.

On their part, the leaders who included Members of the National Assembly, Members of Senate and governors among others, briefed the President on the outcome of peace meetings which have been ongoing.

In this regard, the leaders said that in their earlier meetings, they resolved that the hostilities between the two clans should cease immediately and each community must restrain its members from perpetrating any more acts of violence, failure to which will lead to a communal fine of Kshs 10 million.

The leaders said they had also agreed that payment of blood compensation (diyya) should commence with immediate effect and there should be peace without preconditions.

They also resolved that they must all take responsibility of their areas in the promotion of peace, equity, fairness and justice.

The leaders assured the President that they will convene more meetings and promote dialogue among the two communities with a view to ending the conflict.

The meeting was attended by Secretary to the Cabinet, Mr Francis Kimemia, Kenya Red Cross Secretary-General, Dr Abbas Gullet and top security officers led by Inspector General of Police, Mr David Kimaiyo.

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