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Muslims hold protest over arrests

By | August 6th 2009

By Ally Jamah

Muslims in Nairobi held a protest rally yesterday calling on police to release people arrested before the arrival of US diplomat Hillary Clinton.

Starting outside Jamia Mosque after the noon prayers, hundreds of Muslims carried placards and chanting, saying the community was facing renewed police harassment due to Mrs Clinton’s visit.

Al-Amin Kimathi, head of Muslim Human Rights Forum who convened the rally, said at least 12 Muslims, including a 20-month-old baby, are being held by police. None has been charged with any offence.

Mr Kimathi said: "We are calling on police to charge those detainees in court or release them immediately if they are innocent."

He declined to reveal their identities citing security reasons.

Kimathi also claimed several other detainees were minors under the age of 15.

The leader said the detainees, arrested over the past two weeks, are being held at Kileleshwa Police Station and Inland Container Depot Police Station in Embakasi, Nairobi.

Police Spokesman Eric Kiraithe declined to comment saying he was still consulting over the matter. The detainees were reportedly arrested in Eastleigh and the city centre.

Others criticised police, especially Anti-Terrorism Police Unit, for arresting Muslims arbitrarily.

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