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Kenyan Rights Group Accuses Security Forces of Murder, Torture


FILE - A riot policeman stands guard outside the main gate of the National Assembly in Kenya's capital, nairobi, Dec. 18, 2014.

FILE - A riot policeman stands guard outside the main gate of the National Assembly in Kenya's capital, nairobi, Dec. 18, 2014.

Kenya's National Commission on Human Rights is accusing police and security forces of numerous violations, including murder and torture, in the country's ongoing fight against terrorism.

The commission said in a report released Tuesday that the human rights violations were "widespread systematic and well-coordinated."

Investigators said they were told of multiple cases of suspects being arbitrarily arrested and held in jails from a few hours to many days in extremely overcrowded and degrading conditions.

There were allegations of torture, beatings, waterboarding and electric shocks. Some suspects were hung up on trees, and others were exposed to stinging ants.

The report said ethnic Somalis and Muslims have been disproportionately targeted. Families seeking information on the disappearances of their loved ones get little help from authorities.

The commission said that while it recognized the "immense challenges" the Kenyan government faces in battling extremism and terrorism, it must be done legally and be consistent with global human rights standards.

Kenyan officials have not yet responded to the report.

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