Violence in Kenya spurs KSU peace conference

In the wake of Kenya’s disputed election and the ensuing humanitarian crisis‚ Kennesaw State University's Institute for Global Initiatives is hosting “A Call for Peace‚ National Unity‚ Harmony and Reconciliation” on Jan. 20.(For the complete story‚ please click on the headline above.)

Georgia (Jan 11, 2008) — In the wake of Kenya’s disputed election and the ensuing humanitarian crisis‚ the Institute for Global Initiatives is hosting “A Call for Peace‚ National Unity‚ Harmony and Reconciliation.”

At 2 p.m. on Jan. 20‚ Kenyans and their Georgia supporters will gather in the Social Sciences Building auditorium for a forum celebrating diversity‚ peace‚ national unity and reconciliation. The forum also serves as a fundraising effort for ongoing humanitarian relief efforts. The Kenya Red Cross Society has made an international appeal for more than $15 million to assist an estimated 500‚000 people affected by the chaos.

The event is free and open to the public‚ and attendees are asked to carry a Kenyan flag while wearing a white ribbon symbolizing peace.

Charges of vote rigging greeted President Mwai Kibaki’s surprise victory on Dec. 27‚ and within minutes of the official announcement‚ violence erupted‚ pitting one ethnic group against another. Hundreds have since been killed in the ensuing violence.

“The humanitarian crisis is urgent‚ and we must play our part to help bring normalcy‚” Institute director Akanmu Adebayo said. “Kenya has not faced a crisis of this magnitude and proportion. Our sympathy goes to all who have become victim of this crisis‚ especially women and children.”

KSU has many programs in Kenya either ongoing or in development stages. A recent visit by 24 members of the Kenyan children’s choir‚ Shangilia‚ and a partnership with Kenyatta University for faculty exchanges and student study abroad programs are among the ties the university has with Kenya.

For further information‚ please contact Jennifer Hafer at jhafer@kennesaw.edu or (770) 423−6711.

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