Kenya, violent protests outside Parliament. The country on the brink of civil war | video

In Kenya, thousands of protesters stormed Parliament buildings in Nairobi following news of the passage of the finance bill. According to national television and the Kenyans website, there were shots fired outside Parliament and around ten demonstrators died. The exact number of victims is still uncertain, but the media speak of at least three people killed. Some opposition MPs reportedly joined the demonstrators.

Dozens of injuries have been reported so far, but the number tends to increase. Amnesty International reported 52 arrests, as well as 21 people “abducted or disappeared at the hands of uniformed and non-uniformed officers”. These are mainly activists or influencers who, through their social pages, had supported the anti-government protests.

During the clashes, the police made some arrests and fired tear gas. Kenyan journalist Collins Olunga, from the French news agency AFP, was injured and taken to hospital, where he confirmed he was “stable”. Among the protesters there was also the activist, sociologist and journalist Rita Auma Obama, half-sister of former US president Barack Obama.

The Kenya Red Cross reported that its staff and volunteers were attacked by the police and some of them were injured, as reported by the Kenyans website. The most serious incidents occurred near the Basilica of the Holy Family, where doctors and Red Cross healthcare personnel were setting up makeshift tents to help injured protesters. The police, chasing some demonstrators, fired tear gas and, according to witnesses, also bullets.

From the television images broadcast by local channels, a part of the Parliament building is on fire. The images also show several MPs fleeing from the building. Groups of demonstrators headed towards the county building and set fire to the office of Governor Johnson Sakaja and other administrative offices. As the Kenyans website reports, clashes continue in the capital with shootings in different parts of the city.

A witness said protesters attempted to storm the State House in the western city of Nakuru. They also set fire to the ruling party’s offices in Embu, central Kenya, the Nation newspaper reported. Citizen TV showed footage from Nyeri, central Kenya, with police confronting protesters in the streets. Broadcaster KTN reported that it had “received threats from the authorities” to shut down as it covered the protests.

The White House called for calm in Kenya, a close partner of the United States, after protests degenerated into violence. “The United States is closely monitoring the situation in Nairobi. We condemn violence in all its forms and call for calm,” a National Security Council spokesperson said.

Finally, a “serious disruption” has hit Kenya’s internet network, as announced by NetBlocks, a web monitoring body.