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Kenya reins foreign press in

14 March 2013, 07:38

Nairobi - Kenya warned foreign journalists on Wednesday to register with the government or risk having security forces identify those in the country illegally, in the latest caution aimed at international media.

"Those who don't have proper accreditation should not be here," senior information ministry official Joseph Olewe Owiti told reporters, adding authorities had had "some problems" with foreign journalists in recent days.

Kenya's government heavily criticised some foreign media in the run-up to general elections earlier this month, accusing reporters of inciting new conflict by warning of a risk of a repeat of violence seen in 2007 elections.

"We have a lot of foreign journalists in this country and how they are operating we don't know," he added.

"We may need to seek the help of the security personnel to help us identify those people who are here illegally."

Ahead of the elections, government spokesperson Muthui Kariuki warned foreign journalists the government would "set you on fire before you set us on fire", but later insisted his speech had been taken out of context.

Kenya's capital Nairobi - a regional transport hub - is used by many journalists as a base from which to report on the wider region.

Foreign journalists are supposed to apply for accreditation from the information ministry.

Apart from some isolated incidents, the 4 March polls were peaceful.

President-elect Uhuru Kenyatta faces trial for crimes against humanity at the International Criminal Court in The Hague in July for his alleged role in orchestrating election violence in 2007.


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