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KENYANS HELD IN FOREIGN JAILS INNOCENTLY

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Denzel Musumba

Denzel Musumba

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Human rights organisations claim Ugandan authorities are plotting to send eight Kenyans held in Kampala on terrorism charges to UK and Cuba. They told Parliament’s Defence and Foreign Relations Committee yesterday that there are no sufficient guarantees to stop the Kenyans’ from being taken to the United Kingdom and the US base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. When representatives of the organisations — Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) and Muslim Human Rights Forum (MHRF) — met the House team in Nairobi yesterday they claimed that Kenyans who, were secretly deported to Uganda are each held under solitary confinement and inhuman conditions at Luzira Maximum Security Prison and are denied visitation rights. Farouk Machanje of the MHRF said, "now all the Kenyans (in Ugandan custody) are under solitary confinement in order to damage them psychologically and visitation rights have been denied." He said Parliament should demand a status of Kenya’s prisoners in Uganda’s jails. The Committee chaired by Wajir West MP Adan Keynan said it will meet Internal Security minister George Saitoti tomorrow to shed light on why most of the suspects have not been returned to Kenya nor legal fees for their prosecution paid by the Government as promised last year. Terrorist attack Keynan disclosed that during an earlier meeting with Saitoti, he said most of the suspects were supposed to be released from custody because the Ugandan authorities intended to charge only two of them. The eight Kenyans were arrested in Kampala, Mombasa and Nairobi by the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit and secretly, deported to Uganda, to stand trial over last July’s terrorism attack in Kampala. Two judges have since ruled that the deportations were illegal and unconstitutional and now human rights groups are piling pressure on Parliament to ensure officials who enabled the rendition are prosecuted.

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