Kenya clan clashes halt food distribution

MARIA MACHARIA
NAIROBI, (CAJ News) – THE Kenya Red Cross Society has been forced to suspend operations after the humanitarian organisation was caught up in the conflict afflicting some clans in the drought-ravaged East African country.
Its consignment of over 96 tonnes of food relief has been looted and its staff harassed in Moinin, Loruk in the western Baringo County.
Baringo is affected by both the drought and conflict, where KRCS has been supporting residents with monthly cash transfers, non-food items, rehabilitation of waters sources and medical outreaches in Baringo North, Baringo South and Tiaty sub counties.
In addition, KRCS has been evacuating those wounded in conflict, and supporting displaced mothers and children.
The confrontation this past weekend emanated from the residents who are from the Tugen community accusing KRCS of giving food support to the rival Pokot community.
Dr Abbas Gullet, secretary general of KRCS, said it was with a heavy heart that the Red Cross Society announced the temporal suspension of its activities in Baringo, as they could no longer guarantee the safety of staff and resources.
“Our staff were threatened by residents despite our assurance that the consignment was headed to Turkana county, and had nothing to do with the current inter-clan conflict in Baringo county,” said Gullet
Gullet said never in their history had they ever been hampered from delivering humanitarian work.
“We have always had access to all areas due to our neutrality and impartiality, during all crisis and emergencies.”
Some 3 million Kenyans are suffering the impact of drought.
CAJ News

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