Three Kenyans allowed to sue for colonial crimes against London
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Three Kenyans allowed to sue for colonial crimes against London

London : United Kingdom | Oct 05, 2012 at 6:28 PM PDT
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Kenyan Mau Mau lodge law suit in British court against former colonial rulers
Three Kenyans have been authorized to file a lawsuit Friday in London for colonial crimes committed there are more than 50 years during the repression of the Mau Mau, but the British government argues that the facts prescription immediately appealed. Lawyers for the three plaintiffs - a woman and two men - welcomed the "historical" in the judgment of the High Court in London. The call time announced in the Foreign Office, after an initial appeal in 2011, however, leaves presage further delays and poses new uncertainties about the legal issue in this case. Jane Muthoni Mara, Paulo and Wambugu Wa Muoka Nzili Nyingi claim to have been tortured and sexually abused while they were detained in a British camp. Judge Richard McCombe said Friday "that a fair trial was still possible" because of the existence of "relevant evidence". In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that "the statutory period prescribed for the courts was 3 to 6 years." He also stressed again that "key decision-makers of the time are dead or unable to provide testimony." He ultimately finds that, in the event of litigation, the case should be judged not in London but in the courts of Kenya, which gained its independence in 1963. The Foreign Office has provided repeated Friday that he did not dispute that the three complainants were "victims of torture and inappropriate treatment at the hands of the colonial administration." However, he reiterated his fear "legal consequences" of a trial. Clearly, London contagion fears in Kenya and in other territories of the former empire which could multiply remedies. Remarks made Friday by Martyn Dau, one of the lawyers of the three Kenyans have shown the reality of the "danger": "In light of the judgment (of the High Court in London, Ed), one can expect that the government will behave honorable way to settle the dispute. There is no doubt that victims of torture colonial Malaysia to Yemen, via Cyprus and Palestine, study closely the implications of this judgment, "he argued . Cheers in Nairobi among former Mau Mau Martyn Day hoped the opening of a trial "as soon as possible," but he also left the door open to a settlement between the two parties. In this regard, David Anderson, a historian of African history at the University of Oxford, told the BBC that beyond damages two developments Kenyans hoped "much greater: and an excuse acknowledgment of the facts. " The three plaintiffs were not present in court Friday, but many of their supporters have cried to the statement of judgment. They are the heroes of the struggle waged by the Mau Mau insurgents against British colonial rule, a key step toward independence Kenya. Between 1952 and 1960, the Mau Mau guerrillas, often dressed in animal skins and wearing dreadlocks sowed terror among the British settlers. If 32 white settlers were killed, there is no official report of casualties in the ranks of the rebels. The lowest estimate of 10,000 deaths reported. In Nairobi, the announcement of the verdict was greeted with shouts of joy, singing and dancing among about 150 former Mau Mau fighters gathered outside the headquarters of the Commission on Human Rights. "From the point of view of human rights is a victory of paramount importance," leaped Atsango Chesoni, Director of the Commission. "This is a great time (...) justice has been done," exclaimed Gitu Wa Kahengeri, the spokesman of the association of former Mau Mau fighters.
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Lawyer Martyn Day (L) and supporters celebrate the judgement at London's High Court
Lawyer Martyn Day (L) and supporters celebrate the judgement at London's High Court
gloriacalzita is based in Quezon, Central Luzon, Philippines, and is a Stringer on Allvoices.
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