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Stop distorting Kenya’s stance on Gaza feuds, Joseph tells Palestine Embassy

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Israel’s ambassador to Kenya Oded Joseph has dismissed reports by the Embassy of Palestine in Nairobi that Kenya was championing their cause in the ongoing Israeli-Palestine conflict in Gaza.

Speaking to The Standard on Sunday, May 16, Joseph said Kenya, which is a member of the United Nations Security Council, took a neutral stance of de-escalation which they also back to avert the situation in Gaza.

While responding to a statement released by Palestine’s embassy in Nairobi, the diplomat said Nairobi’s principle position on the fight against terrorism was supreme and cannot be twisted to mean otherwise.

“We want to stop these attacks, but it becomes difficult when the terrorist groups are still firing missiles into Israel.”

Pin-point operations

Joseph downplayed the attacks on media structures, saying they had intelligence reports that the building was being used by Hamas officials.

Israeli forces acted on accurate intelligence that the building housed Hamas military intelligence, and military assets belonging both to the Hamas and the Islamic Jihad.

  He said the situation is dicey as the militants deliberately set bases in buildings that house media outlets and civilians as a tactic to launch attacks and use people as human shield during attacks

There were condemnations after Israeli missiles struck a 12-storey Gaza tower block housing the offices of the US-based Associated Press and Qatar-based broadcaster Al Jazeera on Saturday.

He said the fact that no one was injured when the building was struck is a sign that their intelligence is sophisticated.

“No journalist or resident was injured. We have the technology to ensure the attacks are pinpoint and surgical to avoid casualties,” he said.

Joseph accused Hamas of deliberately and systematically placing military targets within the civilian population, exposing their citizens to danger.

“They set bases in mosques, hospitals, and populated urban places to use their citizens as human shield then blame it on Israeli forces,” he added.

The diplomat said to avert civilian casualties, Israeli forces devote significant time and resources to prepare the attack to give advance warnings such as roof knocking, street knocking, target clearing operations before the attacks.

Started conflict

Joseph blamed Hamas for escalating the seven-day fight that started on May 10 after they started attacking Jews in their places of worship.

He said Israeli police only came in after some Muslims fell for Hamas propaganda and started attacking Jewish prayers in the Western Wall using stockpiled stones and rocks.

The ambassador accused the anti-Israeli forces of using the Sheikh Jarrah evictions to seek sympathy and spread propaganda against Israel, adding that the evictions disputes are being handled by the courts.

The diplomat urged the international community and other nations including Kenya to support Israel in battling Hamas, a terror outfit, that he blamed for committing atrocities both in Israel and Gaza.

He said the Hamas militants have fired 2900 rockets since the beginning of the Hamas aggression killing 10 Israeli killed and 200 injured with 450 of them falling in Gaza injuring and killing Palestinians.

Joseph accused the International Criminal Court (ICC) of being used as a political tool to apportion blame on Israel instead of dealing with humanitarian crime.

UN Security Council meeting

Kenya last week urged all authorities, particularly law enforcement, to de-escalate the situation in Jerusalem before it leads to a more extensive wave of violence.

International pressure to bring an end to the raging conflict between Israel and Hamas militants mounted on Sunday, even as local health officials said an Israeli airstrike in Gaza overnight killed more than two dozen people, the single deadliest attack of the current hostilities.

Over the past week, the 15-member UN Security Council met privately at least twice to discuss ways of reducing tensions.

There was, however, no agreement on a statement or to hold with another meeting set to take place later today via videoconference because of pandemic restrictions.

More than 170 Palestinians had been killed in Israeli airstrikes and shelling in Gaza, and 12 Israelis had died in Hamas rocket attacks.

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Xtian Dela & girlfriend Fatma Banj welcome their first child together.

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YouTuber, blogger and budding politician Aurther Mandera popularly known as Xtian Dela is expecting his first child with his girlfriend Fatma Banj.

The safe delivery of Ms Banj come months after the couple went public with their pregnancy.They shared photos on instagram from their pregnancy shoot, after keeping the pregnancy a secret for a couple of weeks.

Xtian expressed his love for Fatma and poured out his heart to her with a message filled with love, while expressing the changes he has undergone during the time they have been together.

The Blogger in a long post said:

“ Can’t believe it’s already 7 months down the line. You have CHANGED me a LOT @fatmah_banj. You’ve given me happiness, given me peace, made me laugh, cry, smile, challenged me mentally and business-wise,  you’ve become a true BEST friend and now you’ve given me the best gift a man can ask for… You’ve made me a DAD.

I’ve turned a new leaf. Clean shave, more mature and focused thanks to YOU. I’ve let go of all my negative old ways. Apologies to ANYONE I’ve wronged in the past. Starting a new chapter focusing on FAMILY and POLITICS. I MUST make Westlands and Kenya BETTER for my baby.” 

The blogger went on to apologize to all the people he has ever wronged saying he is a changed man whose focus will be on family and politics.

He noted that he is optimistic of clinching the Westlands parliamentary seat come 2022.

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Sudan protesters demand military coup as crisis gets worse

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On Saturday, pro-military demonstrators chanted “down with the hunger government” and called for General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of the armed forces.

“We need military government, di current government don fail to bring us justice and equality,” one protester tells AFP.

Unlike previous demonstrations for di kontri, dem allow protesters to reach di gates of di presidential palace and little police presence na im bin dey.

Pro-government protesters don also call for rallies on Thursday in response to Saturday demonstrations.

On Friday evening, nearly a month after a failed coup, Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok denounced “deep divisions” between civilians and military but also within these two blocks. He also declared that the transition was going through its “most dangerous” crisis, saying that the path to democracy was threatened.

Around him, pick-ups are dropping off new waves of protesters, some of whom are chanting “One army, one people”, while the security forces have blocked many of the capital’s main roads since the morning.

“There is no stability and life is too expensive,” said the 50-year-old man, whose country, one of the poorest in the world, is caught between inflation approaching 400% and an austerity decreed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

For their opponents, Saturday’s demonstrators are supporters of the former deposed regime. Supporters of a complete transfer of power to civilians have already called for “a demonstration of one million people” on Thursday.

Sudan’s prime minister on Friday announced a series of steps for his country’s transition to democracy less than a month after a coup attempt rocked its leadership.

In a speech, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok called the coup attempt an ‘alarm bell’ that should awaken people to the roots of the country’s political and economic challenges.

Authorities announced the coup attempt by a group of soldiers on September 22, saying that it had failed.

They blamed supporters of the country’s former autocrat Omar al-Bashir for planning the takeover.

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3 Cops Implicated In Serial Child Killer’s Escape Freed On Sh100,000 Bail

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The trio, Inspector Philip Mbithi, Corporal Mutuma Boniface and Mwende Mwinzi, were on Friday directed to also provide one contact person and report to the investigating officer daily for the next seven days.

Trial Magistrate Jane Kamau said that the prosecution had not shown compelling reasons to deny the officers bail or bond.

She ordered the investigation team to conclude the probe within seven days with the matter slated for mention on October 21.

The prosecution had applied for fourteen additional days to hold the suspects in custody but their application was opposed by the suspects’ lawyer, Danstan Omari, on grounds that the officers are not a flight risk.

Wanjala was considered to be a threat to the public, especially children, who was arrested some time in July but had been in custody since after investigators, on at least two occasions, asked for his plea taking to be deferred to allow them time to conclude investigations.

Soon after his arrest, he took police to at least six murder scenes in Nairobi’s Shauri Moyo and in Western Kenya where he had dumped the bodies and was taken to court days later.

In Shauri Moyo, Nairobi, police said he led detectives to scenes where he confessed to killing and dumping two minors. Another body was recovered in Westlands.

Wanjala also led the detectives to Kabete during the search where they recovered two more victims’ bodies from a river believed have been killed by the suspect.

Omari also said the suspects will not interfere with ongoing investigations.

The release of the suspects came even as police announced an end to search efforts to apprehend the escaped suspect who was due to be arraigned in court on Tuesday.

Masten Wanjala, 20, was murdered by an irate mob in Bungoma according to Assistant County Commissioner Cornelius Nyaribai confirmed his death on Friday.

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