07 May 2013

Kenyan Mau Mau victims in compensation talks

Thousands of Kenyans who were mistreated during the 1950s Mau Mau insurgency are negotiating payments with the British Government in what could be a landmark settlement for official crimes committed under imperial rule.

By James Barnes

Kenya: landmark compensation case

According to The Guardian newspaper in London, government lawyers have begun the negotiations after failing in attempts to prevent elderly survivors from seeking compensation through British courts.

British rule

The government’s defeat came after the discovery of colonial-era documents which the Foreign Office (FCO) had reportedly kept hidden for decades. The papers revealed crucial details on events towards the end of British rule around the empire.
In the case of Kenya, the papers showed that London officials were aware of a brutal detention regime in which men and women were tortured and killed.
According to the report, up to 10,000 former prisoners may be in line for payments if the talks result in a settlement, with the total compensation figure likely to run into tens of millions of pounds.

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