Senegal seeks strong AU declaration on Kenya (Corrected)

Addis Ababa- Ethiopia (PANA) -- Senegal raised the issue of the post-election crisis in Kenya during the meeting of the African Union (AU) Executive Council here, asking the council to break its silence on the issue, an official source told PANA here Wednesday.
"We said we were highly embarrassed that we came to roll our agenda as if nothing happened in Kenya, while Addis Ababa is close to Kenya,'' Senegalese Senior Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cheikh Tidiane Gadio, said.
"People are burnt in houses (and) churches, and dark memory for Africans are in the streets.
We know what it means in Rwanda.
"We are well-informed about what is happening in Kenya, why then don't we take actions," the Senegalese Minister lamented.
Instead of dealing with the issue, the Foreign Affairs Ministers, who constitute the council, preferred to wait for the outcome of the ongoing mediation by the former UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan.
Still, Senegal said it was not satisfied with that approach.
"We hail Kofi Annan for his mediation but he is not responsible for the killings still going on," Gadio stressed, calling on the AU to send "a very strong political signal both to the Kenyan authorities and the opposition leaders.
" "No reason is good and fair enough to explain the massacre of innocent civilians in villages and the return of machetes as ways to settle political disagreements.
That's a catastrophe for Africa and we will not tolerate it," the Senegalese Foreign Minister emphasised.
While there has been no debate in the Executive Council on the Kenya incidents, the Kenyan Foreign Minister was allowed to make a declaration on the situation in his country, so the issue can be addressed by the heads of state and government summit beginning Thursday.

30 january 2008 15:40:00




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