The growing unrest in Kenya ahead of the country’s presidential and parliamentary elections mostly went unnoticed by the international media, until an image featuring an unresponsive protester began making rounds on the internet.
As the local police fired tear gas and beat up the protesters gathered outside Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission in the capital city of Nairobi, asking for its dissolution, a witness captured a powerful video. The clip shows two armored cops kicking and stomping on a man who was lying motionless on the curb.
The footage (posted above) soon went viral, prompting harsh criticism and sparking a much-needed debate on police brutality in the East African country. Following the outrage, Kenya's national police force announced a probe into the excessive use of force during the protests.
The fate of the man who galvanized the discussion about violence and abuse is still unknown. While some media outlets reported that the man was severely injured, several publications claimed he died on the spot.
Meanwhile, the image of the unconscious protester lying under the raised boot of a baton-clad police officer, captured by Associated Press photographer Ben Curtis, has inspired cartoon artists across the world to criticize the ongoing situation in Kenya via art.
Social media users also expressed their sadness and anger over the incident.
Dead or alive,what police did to the said victim caught on tape is unacceptable and can not be justified at all costs #StopPoliceBrutality— Kenya West© (@KinyanBoy) May 17, 2016
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the— #SaveKenya (@kamwash2) May 17, 2016
oppressor; it must be demanded by the
Under no circumstance whatever can we justify what we saw yesterday. Absolutely unacceptable. #StopPoliceBrutality— Ahmedkadar (@Ahmedkadar1) May 17, 2016