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Summary: 28 January 2008, Brussels - EU Council Conclusions on Kenya, 2846th EXTERNAL RELATIONS Council meeting
The Council adopted the following conclusions:
"1. The Council remains extremely concerned at the continued uncertainty, instability and serious crisis arising from the recent presidential elections in Kenya and is monitoring the situation closely. The Council regrets the loss of life and the serious humanitarian consequences that have ensued after the elections. It condemns the acts of violence that have taken place, for which there can be no impunity, and underlines the need to protect the human rights of all in Kenya. It calls upon all the political leaders in Kenya to act urgently to bring vilolence to an end and ensure security for all Kenyans by publicly and unequivocally rejecting all forms of violence, restraining their followers and encouraging all concerned, including police and army officials, to exercise maximun restraint. It calls on all political leaders to resort to dialogue immediately and secure a political solution based on democratic principles and to the benefit of the Kenyan people. The Council further calls upon the Kenyan authorities to restore the right of the media to work freely and the right of assembly and to avoid excessive or lethal force against those demonstrating peacefully.
2. The Council recalls that the initial findings of the EU Election Observer Mission and reports from other independent observers, notably from the Commonwealth, the International Republican Institute, the East African Community and a number of domestic observer groups, cast serious doubts on the official results of the presidential elections. The Council calls for all allegations of election irregularities to be urgently and thoroughly investigated through appropriate means and in a way that helps to restore the trust of the Kenyan people in democracy. .
3. Building on the commendable efforts of President Kufuor, President of the African Union (AU), the Council welcomes and lends its full support to the ongoing efforts of the Panel of Eminent African Personalities, led by Mr Kofi Annan. The Council is encouraged by the meeting between Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga on 24 January 2008 but urges Kenya´s political leaders now to build on this meeting urgently by pursuing their stated commitment to dialogue and to work together for a just and sustainable peace. The EU stands ready to provide any assistance it can to this process.
4. The Council continues to urge all parties to live up to their responsibilities by engaging constructively and fully in this process, working jointly through dialogue on all issues, including electoral and constitutional reform, and to agree a sustainable and consensual political solution to the crisis. The Council believes such a solution should reflect the clear democratic will of the Kenyan people and enable Kenya’s politicians to overcome their divisions. The EU expresses its willingness to provide any assistance it can to Kenya to help develop and implement the elements of such a political solution, as requested.
5. Until a legitimate solution is agreed, the EU and its Member States cannot conduct business as usual with Kenya. Failure to find a sustainable and consensual political solution would affect donors' engagement with Kenya and EU Kenya relations. Bearing in mind the Lisbon Summit and shared values recently enshrined in the Lisbon Plan of Action, the Council will decide upon its next course of action towards the situation in Kenya, and Kenya’s political leaders, on the basis of their engagement with the Eminent Personalities initiative and progress towards the lasting political solution referred to above.
6. The Council reiterates its continued commitment to respond to the humanitarian needs of Kenyans affected, or displaced from their homes, by the recent acts of violence and stands ready to provide further assistance as required. The Council expresses its concern about the difficulties faced by those engaged in humanitarian assistance and economic activities in Kenya and the region.
7. The Council will continue to monitor closely the events in Kenya and support all efforts to ensure democracy, respect for human rights and stability in the country."