Thursday, 21/11/2019 | 12:10 UTC+0
Libyan Newswire

Press release – Kenya killings and persecution of Christians

The EU should launch a military training mission in Kenya and supply equipment to the Kenyan army and police to help halt the spread of the Al-Shabaab terrorist group, say MEPs on a resolution voted on Tuesday. It should also make it a priority to address the persecution of Christians, they add. This follows Al-Shabaab’s 2 April attack on Kenya’s Garissa University, which killed 147 Christian students and injured 79 others.

In a resolution passed by 578 votes to 31, with 34 abstentions, MEPs condemn the terrorist attacks and convey their condolences to the families of the victims and to the people and Government of Kenya.

 

EU training mission

MEPs advocate setting up an EU military training mission in Kenya and supplying Kenya’s military and police forces with modern equipment and training to “to fight terrorism and prevent the expansion of Al-Shabaab”.  They describe the belated police response to the Garissa attack as “regrettable”

The EU should also “pull together a financial contribution” to help ensure peace and stability in the country and the region. This should be done in cooperation with the African Union and the EU should also consider recourse to the African Peace Facility, MEPs add.

Addressing the persecution of Christians

 

The EU should address the persecution of Christians and other religious communities as a priority, in dialogue with churches and other religious organizations, they suggest.

MEPs note that the attackers in Garissa singled out Christian students and that Al-Shabaab “openly and publicly claims to be waging war on Christians”. Christians are the “most persecuted religious group”, with more than 150,000 killed every year, and attacks against them have “risen tremendously” in recent months, mainly in the Arab world and mostly by jihadist terrorists, they say.

Apart from Nigeria, MEPs also point to examples in Iraq, Libya and Sudan. At the same time, they condemn and reject misinterpretations of Islam designed to “legitimise” the extermination of Christians. They urge Muslim leaders to condemn all terrorist attacks and also call on the Kenyan Government to not draw parallels between Muslims and Al-Shabaab and instead to target only the perpetrators, not wider “ethnic and faith communities” .

 

Procedure:  Non-legislative resolution

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