Two Shot Dead in Mombasa Riots
MOMBASA, Kenya (AP) _ Police killed two people Monday when they opened fire on rioting youths demanding the registration of an Islamic political party, witnesses said.
Police spokesman Jeremiah Matagaro said the rioters threw stones at stores and set vehicles on fire, but had no further details. Reporters and photographers saw two corpses, one shot in the chest and the other in the head.
Under Kenyan law, social and political groups must be registered before they can operate. Opposition parties, legalized in December for the first time in 22 years, have complained of delays in registration.
The violence Monday began after police freed Muslim cleric Khaled Salim Ahmed, who has preached for the registration of the Islamic Party of Kenya and was arrested last week.
Soon after Ahmed’s release, a large crowd outside the courthouse went on a rampage, throwing stones and torching cars, witnesses said.
Rioters denounced President Daniel arap Moi and local leaders of his ruling Kenya African National Union Party.
Mombasa, in southeast Kenya, is the country’s largest port and gateway to tourist resorts along the Indian Ocean.