Kenya: Who Are These Armenians?


Daily Nation, Kenya
March 15 2006


For the past two weeks, the country has been gripped by talk about
mercenaries reportedly brought into the country by powerful people
with an improper motive.

Evidence about wrongdoing has been scant and, instead, accusations
and counter-accusations have been flying around, leaving everybody
thoroughly confused.

In the din, nobody has cared to shed any light on the matter, making
it the stuff of suspense thrillers with ominous overtones. When the
issue first came to light, the public thought it was a figment of
someone’s imagination, and that the matter would die as fast it had
cropped up. Instead, the drama has kept heightening, rising to a
pitch with each new day.

It is now critical that we pause and ask some important questions.

The first is: Are there mercenaries in this country? If so, who
brought them here and for what purpose?

So far, two Armenian brothers have come out publicly to declare
that, although they occupy a residence at Nairobi’s Runda estate,
the house which Langata MP Raila Odinga claimed harboured mercenaries,
they are not actually the “dogs of war” being referred to.

More questions than answers

The denial aside, the behaviour of some seemingly powerful people
and the activities surrounding the two brothers raises more questions
than answers.

When they first came out publicly on Monday, the two did so at a
press conference at Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta Airport’s VIP lounge,
leading to the question: Whose VIPs are they?

All indications are that the press conference was stage-managed by
influential personalities. For what reason? There never should have
been a need for private businessmen to call the press, ostensibly to
explain their mission in Kenya.

It is also clear that the information provided about the Armenians’
travel details does not add up. There are conflicting stories
that one of them either flew in from Dubai on a commercial flight –
investigations show that his name was never in the passenger manifest –
or that he flew into the country in a private jet.

Again there is no corroborating evidence. No private plane landed
at JKIA at the material time. So, where did he come from and through
which means?

On Tuesday, one of the brothers stopped police officers entering the
Runda residence. In fact, he dared the police to produce a search or
arrest warrant before they could be allowed in.

In ordinary circumstances, although the law forbids them doing so,
police do enter people’s residences, conduct searches and even arrest
them without those documents.

Who are these people?

But, in this case, the police officers were eventually recalled and
the operation shelved. The question is: Who are these people that
the police cannot touch?

Police commissioner Hussein Ali had detailed a senior police officer
to investigate the matter. The way things are going, can Kenyans
realistically expect the police to unravel this mystery?

On the other hand, some people have been trying to make political
capital out of this whole mystery. What is their real interest? And
can they deny, under oath, that they have never had any dealings with
the two who claim to be businessmen?

This country has gone through many crises in recent times and Kenyans
would not want to continue being treated to a bizarre drama of the
nature we are witnessing today.

The people want to focus on important matters with a bearing on
national development, not tantalising sideshows. This is why we ask
the Government to explain the matter, and that can only happen if
thorough investigations are carried out and the matter cleared up,
one way or the other.

The politicians who have loudly spoken about the so-called mercenaries,
starting with Mr Odinga and Mr Kalonzo Musyoka, and any others
who might know anything about the Armenians should provide all the
information they have to police to catalyse the investigations.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

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Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS