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Kenya opposition says it suspends protests after agreement with government

KENYA’S opposition said they had suspended the latest anti-government protests planned after reaching an agreement with the government of President William Ruto.

In a statement, the opposition Azimio La Umoja (Declaration of Unity) alliance, led by veteran opposition politician Raila Odinga, said its leadership had met and “agreed to once more suspend the mass protests that we had earlier scheduled to continue tomorrow.”

The decision to suspend the protests was taken after Ruto’s ruling Kenya Kwanza (Kenya First) alliance agreed “to one of our demands,” according to the statement. The opposition did not provide details of the agreement.

On Monday the coalition resumed the twice-weekly protests begun in March to highlight high living costs and alleged fraud in last year’s election.

Odinga is also using the protests to pile political pressure on Ruto, whom he accuses of rigging his victory in last year’s polls.

Clashes between police and protesters and sporadic violent incidents like the torching of property and the use of teargas have marred the demonstrations.

In early April the opposition had suspended the protests after agreeing to talks with Ruto’s representatives. Still, it later announced the protests would resume, accusing the government of not negotiating in good faith.

A boy carries a bouquet of flowers as he walks past a bus torched by unknown people ahead of protests by supporters of Kenya’s opposition leader Raila Odinga of the Azimio La Umoja (Declaration of Unity) One Kenya Alliance, in a nationwide protest over the cost of living and President William Ruto’s government in Nairobi, Kenya. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

By The African Mirror