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Envoys say court decision an "important moment" for Keny | Coastweek

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Supporters of the opposition presidential candidate Raila Odinga celebrate after Supreme Court declared the Aug. 8 presidential election null and void, in Nairobi. Kenya’s Supreme Court on Friday declared the Aug. 8 presidential election null and void and ordered a repeat of similar exercise within 60 days. Chief Justice and President of Supreme Court David Maraga said the election where the incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner had gross irregularities which affected the integrity of elections. XINHUA PHOTOS - DANIEL OOKO

Envoys say court decision an "important moment" for Kenya

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Envoys from the European Union and 23 Western countries said the decision Friday of the Supreme Court of Kenya annulling the Aug. 8 presidential election was "an important moment" for the east African country.

"The court’s independent review has demonstrated Kenya’s resilient democracy and commitment to the rule of law," the 24 envoys said in a joint statement.

"The Kenyan people showed patience and confidence as the legal case ran its course."

The statement urged Kenya’s electoral institutions to begin preparing for a new presidential poll, which has to be held within 60 days.

"We urge everyone to work to make it free, fair, credible, and peaceful.

"We have trust in the ability of Kenya and its citizens to do so."

"All electoral processes can be improved, and we will continue to support Kenya’s institutions in this important work," the statement added.

"The transparent legal process and the parties’ respect for the court’s decision reflect the strength of Kenya’s democracy."

"At this historic time, we stand with all Kenyans as they support and reaffirm their democracy, which is an example for Africa and the world," the statement said.

In addition to the EU, the envoys who signed on the statement are from Austria, Australia, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States.

The Kenyan supreme court, in nullifying the results of the election, cited "irregularities and illegalities" committed by the electoral board that harmed the integrity of the vote.


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