Sunday, February 10, 2008

Back to emnity

Settlement of Kenya's political dispute that has descended into ethnic violence that threatens the country's very future appeared further away Sunday after opposition leader Raila Odinga backed away from conciliatory statements and demanded the resignation of President Mwai Kibaki. Speaking before supporters in western Kenya, Odinga told a cheering crowd that Kibaki "must step down or there must be a re-election — in this I will not be compromised," according to the Reuters international news agency. Odinga, who accuses Kibaki of stealing the Dec. 27 presidential election between the two of them, had previously agreed to negotiations with the help of former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan. Last week's conciliatory comments led to Annan's comments Friday that a settlement was imminent. Post-election violence killed more than 1,000 Kenyans and displaced more than 300,000 as society broke down along old tribal lines. There are more than 40 ethnic groups in Kenya.

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