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Mosque leaders slam youth conduct, police brutality

05 February 2014, 10:16

Nairobi - The Jamia Mosque Committee rebuked the law-breaking Muslim youth in Mombasa as well as the heavy-handed manner in which the police handled the situation.

Police have been battling youth in Mombasa after the youngsters protested the death of two colleagues.

The youth have been demanding the release of colleagues arrested after police stormed a meeting in Masjid Musa Mosque for alleged recruitment for Al-Shabaab, the Somali -based militant group.

Jamia Mosque Committee member Ibrahim Lithome said even though the youth might have been breaking the law, it was not in order for the police to “desecrate the mosque by barging in with their shoes on.”

“We cannot afford to keep silent on the fact that police used excessive force in disrupting the meeting, gross violation of human and children rights,” said Lithome.

“The minors and the women held in custody should be immediately released,” said Lithome.

He also added that the government should be seen to be tackling the problem of violence and extremism not as retaliating.

Among the youth and children who were arrested by police on Sunday afternoon by police on suspicions of attending a radicalization meeting, 129 of them were remanded on Monday for five days to allow for investigations to be carried out.

The suspects will be arraigned in court for the mention of their cases on Friday.

There has been an increase in cases of clashes between the police and youth in Mombasa in the recent past with Muslim youth alleging that the government was behind executions of Muslim priests said to be in support of Al-Shabaab.

– CAJ News


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