5 October 2012

Kenya: Mau Mau War Victims Win Right to Sue Britain

Three Kenyans who say they were victims of torture and sexual abuse at the hands of British colonial rulers during the 1950s Mau Mau uprising have been granted the right to sue Britain, according to AFP.

Jane Muthoni Mara, Paulo Muoka Nzili and Wambugu Wa Nyingi told the London High Court that they were subjected to torture and sexual mutilation. AFP reports that the lawyer for the Kenyans said Nzili was castrated, Nyingi severely beaten and Mara subjected to sexual abuse in detention camps during the Mau Mau rebellion.

The fourth claimant, Ndiku Mutwiwa Mutua, has died since legal proceedings began.

The British government had argued through her lawyers that the former freedom fighters should have instead sued the Kenya government, which took over all liabilities after independence.

In his judgment, which gives the Kenyans permission to claim damages from the British government, High Court judge Richard McCombe said: "I am justified in concluding that the available documentary base is very substantial indeed and capable of giving a very full picture of what was going on in government and military circles in both London and Kenya during the 'emergency'."

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