Mass Atrocity Monday, 5/2/2016: The Wagalla Massacre

Justice in Conflict

Wagalla Massacre Monument, from website of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights. Wagalla Massacre Monument, from website of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights.

Hundreds, maybe thousands, of people died on the Wagalla airstrip in early February, 1984. The victims were ethnic Somalis living in Kenya’s North Eastern province. Their killers were members of the Kenyan army, ostensibly investigating reports of a planned rebellion by members of the Degodia clan.

Over the course of several days, troops burst into homes, raping women, destroying property, and seizing the men. The Degodia men, and anyone else unlucky enough to be caught up in the search, were taken to the airstrip. Once there, they were told take off their clothes and lie on the hot ground. Those who refused were shot on the spot. The rest were beaten and tortured, asked over and over if they owned a gun, and where it was. They were there for days, without food or water, baking in the hot sun.

Survivors say more…

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