29 October 2013

Kenya: Kimaiyo Denies Threating Journalists With Arrest Over Westgate Reporting

Photo: Capital FM
Three Kenya Defence Soldiers fired over Westgate mall looting (file photo).

Kenya's Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo denied threatening to arrest journalists who exposed security forces allegedly looting the Westgate shopping mall, and said his remarks were taken out of context, Kenya's The Standard reported Monday (October 28th).

Kimaiyo said he only "cautioned and also urged members of the media to embrace objective reporting and even make positive criticism where necessary so as to help the NPS [National Police Service] offer even better services".

On October 23rd, Kimaiyo said there were clear limits to freedom of expression and media rights, and said anyone found to have committed a crime would be apprehended.

"You need not to propagate a propaganda war, you need not to incite Kenyans, you need not to distribute or maybe issue statements that can amount to hate speech, and you need not to issue statements or reports that can be able to affect the life of another person," he said.

Journalists from Kenya's KTN television and the Standard Group were among those summoned for questioning over the Westgate reporting.

The Standard Group, which has the same owners as KTN, said its lawyers received verbal assurances on Monday from the Divisional Criminal Investigation Officer that the summons had been revoked.

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