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KENYA: I was treated like a beast before ‘illegal’ deportation – Miguna

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Lawyer Miguna Miguna has narrated his ordeal in police custody to the BBC, saying he was treated like a “beast”.

The controversial lawyer said he was “abducted” from Runda by tens of heavily armed hooded men who claimed they were police officers and “treated like a beast”.

“About 30 armed men detonated a device at my door last Friday and took me away from my family,” he told BBC presenter James Coomarasamy at Amsterdam Airport on Wednesday.

“They kept me under incommunicado detention and moved me to at least five police stations. I had no access to my lawyers and the police openly threatened to deal with me.”

Kiambu, Githunguri, Lari, Inland Container Depot, Kajiado and Airport police stations are among the locations where the National Resistance Movement ‘general’ was held.

Miguna said he did not take a bath or shower since the day of his arrest and that his request to see a doctor, as he developed symptoms of pneumonia, was not granted.

“I have been treated so badly… like a beast… I was not allowed to sleep… I was kept standing for over 24 hours and when i managed to sleep, I did so on a bare cement floor that was cold,” he said.

But he added: “I am going to Canada which I know stands for the highest standards of human rights.”

Miguna said he was deported after he refused to accept the charges mounted against him.

“They had charged me with being a member of NRM, which is apparently an outlawed group, and said that by administering the oath during the swearing-in, I aided Raila in committing a capital offence which is treason.”
Miguna explained that he rejected the charges and did not plead with them as he couldn’t see or speak to his lawyers.

He continued: “They wanted to take me to a cell on the Kenya-Tanzania border when the court declared that they had ignored five orders and thus they could not charge me with any criminal offence under the Kenyan jurisdiction.

“They had no option but to finally deport me on grounds that I was illegally in Kenya. But the law is clear – I was born in Kenya and thus they cannot purport to cancel my citizenship. The security agencies have generally thrown the constitution to the dogs and have no respect for the rule of law.”

The lawyer has vowed to fight back amid efforts to reverse Interior cabinet secretary Fred Matiangi’s deportation order. He told BBC that he had already instructed his lawyers to initiate applications and proceedings to nullify the deportation and reinstate his passport.

Wife and kids were frantic

In her interview with Canadian magazine, Maclean’s Miguna’s wife Jane said she was frantic with worry when police failed to take him to Milimani as the High Court ordered.

She said she kept calling the case manager at the Canadian High Commission in Nairobi while trying to find her husband.

“From Sunday to yesterday [Tuesday], she [the official] was not even able to tell me if Miguna was dead or alive,” Jane said in her interview.

“This really worried me because the commissioner was not even able to get information from the Kenyan government to assure me that they were holding Miguna and that he was alive.”

Jane said Miguna had told their three children he would be returning home at the weekend.

“They were already asking ‘why didn’t daddy come’,” she said, adding she kept telling them that he had an engagement.

The two have been married for 16 years and have been living in Richmond Hill, Canada.

Miguna was arrested at his Runda home in Nairobi last Friday night and kept in police custody for five days.

The lawyer was deported to Canada on Tuesday night for his role in the administration of Nasa leader Raila Odinga’s oath. Miguna, a lawyer and self-declared NRM general, stamped the documents after Raila was declared the people’s president.

Briefing Room

Diplomatic leaks: UAE dissatisfied with Saudi policies

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AL JAZEERA — Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed (MbZ) is working on breaking up Saudi Arabia, leaked documents obtained by Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar revealed.

Al Akhbar said that the leaked documents contained secret diplomatic briefings sent by UAE and Jordanian ambassadors in Beirut to their respective governments.

One of the documents, issued on September 20, 2017, disclosed the outcome of a meeting between Jordan’s ambassador to Lebanon Nabil Masarwa and his Kuwaiti counterpart Abdel-Al al-Qenaie.

“The Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed is working on breaking up the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the Jordanian envoy quoted the Kuwait ambassador as saying.

A second document, issued on September 28, 2017, reveals meeting minutes between the Jordanian ambassador and his UAE counterpart Hamad bin Saeed al-Shamsi.

The document said the Jordanian ambassador informed his government that UAE believes that “Saudi policies are failing both domestically and abroad, especially in Lebanon”.

“The UAE is dissatisfied with Saudi policies,” the Jordanian envoy said.

The Qatar vote
According to the leaks, UAE ambassador claims that Lebanon voted for Qatar’s Hamad bin Abdulaziz al-Kawari in his bid to become head of UNESCO in October 2017.

“[Lebanese Prime Minister Saad] Hariri knew Lebanon was voting for Qatar,” the UAE ambassador said in a cable sent to his government on October 18, 2017.

In November last year, Hariri announced his shock resignation from the Saudi capital Riyadh.

He later deferred his decision, blaming Iran and its Lebanese ally in Lebanon, Hezbollah, for his initial resignation. He also said he feared an assassination attempt.

Officials in Lebanon alleged that Hariri was held hostage by Saudi authorities, an allegation Hariri denied in his first public statement following his resignation speech.

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Somalia’s Puntland region asks UAE to stay as Gulf split deepens

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BOSASO, Somalia (Reuters) – Somalia’s semi-autonomous Puntland region urged the United Arab Emirates not to close its security operations in the country after a dispute with the central government, saying the Gulf power was a key ally in the fight against Islamist militants.

The dispute goes to the heart of an increasingly troubled relationship between Gulf states – divided by their own disputes – and fractured Somalia, whose coastline sits close to key shipping routes and across the water from Yemen.

Analysts have said the complex standoff risks exacerbating an already explosive security situation on both sides of the Gulf of Aden, where militant groups launch regular attacks.

The central Somali government said on Wednesday it was taking over a military training program run by the UAE.

Days later the UAE announced it was pulling out, accusing Mogadishu of seizing millions of dollars from a plane, money it said was meant to pay soldiers.

“We ask our UAE friends, not only to stay, but to redouble their efforts in helping Somalia stand on its feet,” said the office of the president of Puntland, a territory that sits on the tip of the Horn of Africa looking out over the Gulf of Aden.

Ending UAE support, “will only help our enemy, particularly Al Shabaab and ISIS (Islamic State),” it added late on Monday.

SUSPICION, RESENTMENT

The UAE is one of a number of Gulf powers that have opened bases along the coast of the Horn of Africa and promised investment and donations as they compete for influence in the insecure but strategically important region.

That competition has been exacerbated by a diplomatic rift between Qatar and a bloc including the UAE. In turn, those splits have worsened divisions in Somalia.

Puntland, which has said it wants independence, has sought to woo the UAE which runs an anti-piracy training center there and is developing the main port. The central government in Mogadishu last year criticized Puntland for taking sides in the Gulf dispute. Qatar’s ally Turkey is one of Somalia’s biggest investors.

One Somali government official said last week Mogadishu had decided to take over the UAE operation because the Gulf state’s contract to run it had expired. Another official said the government was investigating the money taken from the plane.

The competition among Gulf states in Somalia has fueled accusations of foreign interference and resentment in many corners of Somali society.

The loss of the UAE program could have a destabilizing effect, said one security analyst, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“The value of the UAE trained forces was two-fold – they were relatively well trained but, most importantly, they were paid on time,” unlike other parts of the security forces, the analyst told Reuters.

Somalia has been mired in conflict since 1991.

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Puntland President calls UAE continue its mission in Somalia

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