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Police in the Kenyan capital fire live bullets as protesters rally against proposed new taxes

Yoopya with Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Police in Kenya fired live ammunition at anti-government protesters in the capital Nairobi on Tuesday as thousands continued to rally demanding legislators vote against new taxes proposed in a controversial finance bill.

Two people died in protests last week but there were no immediate reports of any fresh casualties Tuesday.

Medics set up emergency response temporary shelters in different cities with supplies donated by Kenyans.

The third round of protests took place as lawmakers vote on the finance bill that would introduce new taxes, including an eco-levy that would raise the price of goods like sanitary towels and diapers. A proposal to tax bread was removed after public outcry but demonstrators are still calling on Parliament not to pass the bill.

The Kenya Human Rights Commission on Tuesday shared a video of officers shooting at protesters and said they would be held to account.

The commission wrote on X addressing President William Ruto: “The world is watching your descent into tyranny! Your regime’s actions is an assault on democracy. All those involved in the shooting – actively or passively – must be held to account.”

The Kenya Law Society President Faith Odhiambo on Tuesday said 50 Kenyans, including her personal assistant, had been “abducted” by people believed to be police officers. She said there were instances of extrajudicial killings, police abductions, torture and people kept incommunicado for several days.

Some of those missing included those who were vocal in the ongoing demonstrations and were taken away from their homes, workplaces and public spaces in the run-up to the Tuesday protests, according to civil society groups.

Police officials did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Parliament Speaker Moses Wetangula on Tuesday directed the inspector general of police to provide information on the whereabouts of those the opposition said were abducted by police.

Ruto on Sunday said he was proud of the young people who had come out to exercise their democratic duty and said he would engage the youth on their concerns. Ruto was currently outside the capital attending an African Union retreat.


EVELYNE MUSAMBI | Musambi is an Associated Press reporter based in Nairobi, Kenya. She covers regional security, geopolitics, trade relations and foreign policy across East Africa.

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Police in the Kenyan capital fire live bullets as protesters rally against proposed new taxes

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