Stephen is editor of The Kenyan Spectator, a national weekly publishing from Nairobi. His main areas of interest are foreign relations, security and democracy as well as economy and information technology.

My Articles

July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The humanitarian situation in Liberia could worsen amid political disagreements between the head of the transitional government and rebels, some observers fear.Many Liberians are also concerned that if United Nations peacekeeping troops are not bolstered in number and deployed outside the capital city of Monrovia, displaced civilians will not return to their homes because of security fears.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Christian persecution in Islamic Somalia is on the rise, and humanitarian aid workers from the West are also under attack by Muslim radicals, according to a Christian human rights organization.The UK-based Barnabas Fund is hoping to draw international attention to an unreported situation in the Horn of African country, which has been without a functioning administration for more than a decade.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Hopes for a comprehensive peace agreement in Sudan are being held up by fighting in the western part of the country, and complicated by a "clash" of two separate peace initiatives - one backed by the U.S, the other involving the European Union - according to a Sudanese intelligence source.The U.S. is actively pushing the main peace talks, currently taking place in Kenya between the Khartoum government and the key rebel group the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA).
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Delegates attending a conference on AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases here have accused the developed world of failing to devote sufficient financial resources to the fight against AIDS in Africa.Although funding has increased by 20 percent from 2002, the delegates said the $4.7 billion to be spent during 2003 was still not enough - and less than half of what the world will need to fight the disease in 2005.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Zimbabwe is "on the brink of disaster," which will only be averted if its neighbors act to bring about change in the southern African country, in the opinion of a top U.S. diplomat.More sanctions may be needed if President Robert Mugabe's regime is to become more flexible in accommodating the views of the opposition, added Walter Kansteiner, the outgoing assistant secretary for African affairs.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The war against terrorism, the fight against HIV/AIDS and trade issues dominated United States-Africa relations in 2003.Overall, bilateral relations appear to have improved over the past 12 months, although disagreements did arise over specific issues relating to terrorism, the International Criminal Court and biotechnology.But Kenyan political analyst Reuben Kyama said such disagreements had been overshadowed by the success of U.S.-Africa trade, facilitated by the
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - A decision by Muslim leaders in Kenya to reject a U.S. government offer to fund a system of Islamic schools called madrassas is the result of mistrust and suspicion, a religious scholar said here. The suspicion was driven both by an absence of direct consultation between the two sides, and the feeling held by many Muslims that the U.S. viewed Islam as a violent religion, Dr. Hassan Mwakimako of the University of Nairobi said in an interview.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Analysts are optimistic that Sudan's comprehensive peace agreement will be signed soon. The optimism follows Thursday's agreement on the country's transition security arrangement, previously seen as the most contentious issue in efforts to resolve the 20 year-old conflict.However, there are fears that elements on both sides could scuttle the progress achieved so far.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The U.S. and Kenya are holding joint military exercises on the Kenyan coast, with the war against regional terrorism a primary focus.Officials say the training aims to improve the forces' capability to counter the threat of terror in a region that has proven to be vulnerable to extremist attacks, while also strengthening existing military relations between Kenya and the U.S.The American Embassy in Nairobi said the joint exercises, "Edged Mallet 04," involve several hundred military personnel from each country.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Growing world demand for marijuana is prompting a shift in Africa from crops such as coffee and tea to cannabis, resulting in food shortages and an increase in criminal activity, according to new studies.The U.N. International Drug Control Program (UNDCP) said an estimated 147 million people -- 3.5 percent of the global population aged 15 and above -- used cannabis in 1998-2000.Rising consumption is increasing the demand for more cultivation, the agency said.
July 7, 2008, 8:14 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - In a move reflecting both a change in political direction and recognition of the growing problem of terrorism, the Kenyan government is transforming an elite security unit.The National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS), which had a controversial political role during the government of former President Daniel arap Moi, will now focus on criminal intelligence and counter-terrorism.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Kenyan Muslims have threatened to form their own state under Islamic law (shari'a) after delegates reviewing the Kenyan constitution overwhelmingly rejected demands that shari'a get formal recognition.Muslim leaders accused their Christian counterparts here of working with "foreign evangelists" to suppress the freedoms enjoyed by the country's Muslim community.Muslims make up about 10 percent of Kenya's population of about 31 million.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - President George W. Bush on Wednesday encouraged South African President Thabo Mbeki to "continue working for the return of democracy" in Zimbabwe, which has been hit by famine and political repression.Bush described the country's troubles as a "very sad situation."
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The Nigerian government is under fire for its decision to give shelter to former Liberian President Charles Taylor, who resigned and went into exile early this week.Critics of the move say the notorious former warlord may use their country as the base to initiate conflicts in Nigeria and the broader region, as he is accused of doing while he held power in Liberia.In a bid to end a civil war in Liberia that has had an enormous humanitarian impact, Nigeria offered Taylor asylum in the southeastern city of Calabar.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The United States will further enhance its bilateral relations with Kenya despite security threats to U.S. interests in the East African country, a senior State Department official said here."Instead of scaling down our activities in Kenya, we are committed to deepening our relations by supporting democracy, security and the economic empowerment of Kenyans," said Under Secretary of State for Management Grant Green.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - U.S. efforts aimed at stemming the international trade in uncut diamonds that funds rebel activities in Africa have been widely welcomed, although achieving success in blocking the trade at its source is likely to be difficult.The House of Representatives recently passed legislation banning the entry of illegal, uncut diamonds, often referred to as "blood" or "conflict" diamonds, into the United States. Passage in the Senate is expected shortly.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Kenya has sought the help of U.S. and British security agents to improve security and enhance intelligence gathering in the wake of fresh terror alerts.Speaking in the coastal city of Mombasa, Tourism and Information Minister Raphael Tuju confirmed the presence of foreign security agents, saying this was part of Kenya's commitment to preventing future terror attacks.Among other things, Britain has provided security experts to train local hoteliers in dealing with the threat of terrorism, he said.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Anti-slavery campaigners are urging the United States to press other governments to sign and ratify conventions relating to modern-day slavery, following President Bush's remarks on the evils of that practice.Early on during his ongoing African tour, Bush termed the Africa slave trade as "one of the greatest crimes of history" - a cruel enterprise that saw slaves entering "societies indifferent to their anguish and made prosperous by their unpaid labor."
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - An African legal expert believes it is only a matter of time before former Liberian president Charles Taylor, indicted by the U.N.-backed war crimes court in Sierra Leone, is arrested.Taylor, now exiled in Nigeria, is accused of playing a key role in the brutal 10-year war waged against the Sierra Leone government by the brutal Revolutionary United Front rebel group.Taylor is accused of offering logistic support and helping to arm the RUF, whose trademark was hacking off the limbs of civilians supportive of the government.
July 7, 2008, 8:13 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Washington is optimistic that the three African members of the U.N. Security Council will support its position on the military disarmament of Iraq, if a new draft resolution on the crisis goes to a vote.U.S. Assistant Secretary for Africa Walter Kansteiner said he was optimistic that discussions with Cameroon, Angola and Guinea, currently going on in New York, "will yield positive results."