Wednesday, January 30, 2008
The top U.S. diplomat in Africa said today that Kenya's main political parties locked in a deadly dispute over the outcome of the Dec. 27 election should agree to share power and form a coalition government. Jendayi Frazer made the statement as negotiators from the two parties prepared to meet Thursday for a second day of talks brokered by former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan. Three-member teams from President Mwai Kibaki's Party of National Unity and opposition leader Raila Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement are trying to resolve a dispute that began with the Dec. 27 balloting and has descended into ethnic clashes and anarchy that threaten the country's roles as a major port and desirable tourist destination. Kibaki says he won the election for a second term but Odinga claims he won the vote and the election was stolen from him. Since the election, violence has broken out along tribal lines in normally peaceful Kenyan towns pitting members of Kibaki's Kikuyu tribe against members of the Luo, Luhya and Kalenjin tribes who back Odinga. Britain, France, Germany, Italy and the European Union declared their support for Annan's mediation effort yesterday at a meeting in London, the Reuters international news service reported.