Kenyan Lawmakers Fight After Passing Anti-Terror Bill

| by Edward Arnold

Kenyan lawmakers erupt in a parliamentary brawl after passing a very controversial anti-terrorism bill. The bill will allow authorities additional powers to crack down on terrorists, including allowing them to hold suspects for nearly a year.

The bill also will punish journalists who publish unnapproved photos of terrorist suspects or undermine the state's terrorism operations. Journalists could go to jail for up to three years, according to the Daily Mail.

Rights groups contend this bill is an assault on basic freedoms and civil liberties while the government supports the need to apprehend and eliminate the Simalia-based Shebab Islamists terrorising their country.

Once the bill passed, opposition leaders mobbed the rostrum and grab the piece of legislation, ripping it into pieces. The chaos continued as more members rushed the platform and began fighting. Here's the footage:

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta supports the bill.

"There is nothing to fear about the bill unless you have been engaging in criminal activities," he said.

The United States and nine other western countries have warned Kenya protect their security but to always uphold their Constitution.

"It is important that the legislation, while strengthening security, respects human rights and international obligations," they said in a collective statement. "Protecting Kenya's constitution and upholding civil liberties and democracy are among the most effective ways to bolster security."

Source: Daily Mail / Photo Credit: Daily Mail