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Kenya reviewed on torture reforms

May 17, 2013 at 2:03 PM

GENEVA, Switzerland, May 17 (UPI) -- There are two sides to the human rights story in Kenya and one of them deals with reports of torture and cruel treatment, the United Nations was told.

Kenyan Attorney General Githu Muigai briefed a U.N. committee against torture from Geneva. He said there have been major improvements in Kenya's human rights record in terms of how it applies U.N. conventions on torture and ill-treatment.

"The criminal justice system played a central role in securing the protection of rights guaranteed in the convention and to this end, the government had undertaken a major reform to enhance its effectiveness," his report read.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Vice President William Ruto were indicted by the International Criminal Court for allegedly playing a role in the post-election violence that left more than 1,000 Kenyans dead in 2007.

Special envoy on the report of Kenya Satyabhoosun Domah told the United Nations that official accounts and grassroots accounts varied.

"Despite the country's enormous potential, the words heard in connection with Kenya were corruption, extortion, torture and cruel treatment," he said in his address.

Director of Africa programs at Human Rights Watch Daniel Bekele said recently that, although recent elections were relatively peaceful, there's been a cycle of violence in Kenya that requires comprehensive justice and reconciliation.

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