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On Friday, June 28, the High Court issued a directive prohibiting the national police service from using water cannons, tear gas, live ammunition, rubber bullets, and other severe measures against peaceful demonstrators protesting the Finance Bill. The court’s order came after recent incidents of police brutality across the country.

The directive followed a petition filed by Saitabao Ole Kanchory, who sought the court’s intervention due to escalating violence against protestors. Kanchory named Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome, Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki, and Attorney General Justin Muturi as respondents.

The High Court instructed the police to cease using brute force, violence, extrajudicial killings, and cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of peaceful protestors. The court also prohibited unnecessary arrests, abductions, detentions, harassment, intimidation, and torture.

The order will remain in effect until the petition is heard and determined. The court emphasized the prohibition against committing extrajudicial killings and other forms of mistreatment of demonstrators.

This decision comes shortly after a tragic incident where several Kenyans were shot while attempting to access parliament buildings, resulting in fatalities and critical injuries. The court’s directive also follows the recent upholding of military deployment to assist police in controlling protests and protecting government infrastructure.

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