Victims of atrocities committed by the British Army Training Unit in Kenya (BATUK) in Laikipia and Samburu were on Monday morning barred by the police from gathering and addressing the media.
The victims wanted to air their grievances ahead of the impending visit of King Charles to the country.
Among those obstructed by the police was the family of Agnes Wanjiru, a woman whose death in March 2012 in Laikipia was linked to the British soldiers.
Wanjiru’s mother, Mary Wambui, has waited nine years in search of justice for her daughter, who was allegedly raped before being killed at a hotel in Nanyuki town.
Also present was the widow of Linus Murangiri, who lost his life during a fire incident linked to BATUK.
Murangiri’s wife, Jane Njeri, has not received any compensation or explanation since her husband, who was a casual worker at a BATUK camp in Samburu, died in a mysterious fire that broke out in his tent in July 2019.
The victims had planned to meet at a city hotel but were prevented from doing so by a contingent of police officers who arrived at the venue with police vehicles and blocked the entrance.
James Mwangi, the organizer of the gathering, expressed frustration as the police officers did not provide any reasons for their actions.
According to Mwangi, they received orders to cancel their planned procession and press conference.
During his four-day official visit to Kenya, King Charles is facing demands to address the legacy of eight decades of British colonial rule, as well as concerns that foreign ownership of valuable farmland and accountability for the actions of British soldiers stationed in Kenya have not been adequately acknowledged.