Kenya’s ethnic cleavages
I was clearly too hasty in speculating that Kenya’s election-related violence would die down. Now, it seems, parts of the country have descended into low-level ethnic warfare: Protests erupted in western Kenya and machete-wielding mobs faced off in the Rift Valley on Monday after scores of people were killed in ethnic violence, complicating mediation by ...
Protests erupted in western Kenya and machete-wielding mobs faced off in the Rift Valley on Monday after scores of people were killed in ethnic violence, complicating mediation by former U.N. boss Kofi Annan.
In the normally peaceful Rift Valley town of Nakuru, a mortuary worker said on Monday that 64 bodies were lying in the morgue, all victims of the past four days of ethnic fighting.
Gangs from rival communities have been fighting each other with machetes, clubs, and bows and arrows in Nakuru and nearby Naivasha, both famous for their lakes teeming with wildlife.
As many as 800 people have been killed since the rioting and ethnic fighting began in late December. Just how ethnically divided is Kenya? Very. The BBC has a handy map:
President Mwai Kibaki is a Kikuyu; opposition leader Raila Odinga is a Luo who has extensive support from Kalenjins as well.
Blake Hounshell is a former managing editor of Foreign Policy.
More from Foreign Policy
Chinese Hospitals Are Housing Another Deadly Outbreak
Authorities are covering up the spread of antibiotic-resistant pneumonia.
Henry Kissinger, Colossus on the World Stage
The late statesman was a master of realpolitik—whom some regarded as a war criminal.
The West’s False Choice in Ukraine
The crossroads is not between war and compromise, but between victory and defeat.
Washington wants to get tough on China, and the leaders of the House China Committee are in the driver’s seat.