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Kenya's response to terror comes under criticism from US

02 May 2014, 16:05

Nairobi - The United States of America has criticized Kenya’s efforts towards countering terrorism and violent extremism.

In the just-released 2013 report on country terrorism, the US government stated that some Kenyan civil society organizations actively worked to address the drivers of radicalization and violent extremism in Kenya, often with assistance from the United States and other international partners.

“But the Government of Kenya is not engaged in significant efforts in such areas,” it stated.

The United States, which regards Kenya in the report as a strong ally in the fight against al-Shabaab and Al-Qaida, adds that the September 2013 al-Shabaab attack on Nairobi’s Westgate Shopping Mall focused the world’s attention on Kenya and the East African country’s counter-terrorism efforts.

The report says that the Westgate attack highlighted significant shortcomings in the Kenyan security forces’ response.

About 70 people died during the attack.

The report further criticized Kenya’s inability to release a report on the Westgate attack months after the attack.

“President Uhuru Kenyatta announced his intention to appoint a commission of inquiry into Westgate’s lapses and how we can avoid them in the future but no such report had been released publicly by year’s  end,” stated the report.

The report further criticized the government for not involving the civil society in its efforts to counter the financing of terrorism in Kenya.

 - CAJ News

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It however lauded the efforts that the country had taken in this regard especially by scrutinizing transactions through the popular mobile money transfer, M-Pesa.

“The Financial Reporting Centre-monitored mobile money transactions to a degree, especially the popular Safaricom M-pesa service, but did not engage with NGOs to file suspicious transaction reports,” it nonetheless stated. – CAJ News


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