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Barack Obama’s Half-Sister Tear-Gassed During Protests Outside Parliament In Nairobi

The half-sister of former US President Barack Obama was one of the protesters tear-gassed during protests in Nairobi.

Kenyan activist Auma Obama, the half-sister of former U.S. President Barack Obama, was one of the protesters tear-gassed on Tuesday during demonstrations outside the parliament building in Nairobi.

Police reportedly opened fire on protesters who were attempting to storm Kenya’s legislature, resulting in at least five protesters killed, dozens wounded, and parts of the parliament building set ablaze. This chaos ensued as lawmakers passed legislation to raise taxes.

Explaining her presence at the protest, Auma Obama said, “I’m here because – look at what’s happening. Young Kenyans are demonstrating for their rights. They’re demonstrating with flags and banners. I can’t even see anymore,” she said, coughing and shielding her eyes from the smoke. “We are being tear-gassed.”

Kenyan police had fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse young protesters in Nairobi earlier on, as demonstrators rallied across the country against proposed tax hikes.

The protests, which have been mostly peaceful, intensified when demonstrators breached parliament barricades, prompting police to fire live bullets.

Hundreds of protesters broke through barriers outside parliament, with many wounded by live rounds, according to Amnesty International Kenya.

Stone-throwing demonstrators clashed with police, who used tear gas, rubber bullets, and water cannons to disperse thousands of mostly young protesters.

Despite heavy police presence, thousands of protesters marched through Nairobi’s business district towards parliament, pushing back against barricades. Police in full riot gear fired tear gas and rubber bullets into the crowd as protesters livestreamed the action, chanting and beating drums.

Protests have been ongoing in other cities, including Mombasa, Kisumu, and Eldoret. Anger over a cost-of-living crisis has fuelled the nationwide rallies, with demonstrators demanding the finance bill be scrapped.

Melissa Enoch

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