diplomatic immunity

Diplomatic immunity defence in Kenya's maintenance case

The tragic story of young Harry Dunn, knocked over and killed last year allegedly by the wife of a member of the US diplomatic corps in the UK, was a reminder of the conundrums that can sometimes be caused by diplomatic immunity. She left the UK after the accident and the US government has refused her return, citing immunity. Now a poignant new case is being decided in Kenya, a case that raises just as complex a conflict between rights and immunity. It concerns a senior diplomat from Sierra Leone, stationed in Kenya.

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Quite properly, given that a child is involved, the two parties in this case aren’t identified. The judgment refers to them simply as AKK – the putative father – and SMM, the mother.

Judge slams Kenya's 'shameful' treatment of diplomat

The High Court in Nairobi has strongly criticised the government’s action in deporting from Kenya a diplomat representing Niger. Ali Oumarou, who has been recognised by Kenya as honorary consul for Niger, was summarily deported in August 2019. Oumarou has since challenged his deportation in the Kenyan courts from outside the country.

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Ali Oumarou has lived in Kenya for at least 10 years. He is married to a Kenyan and they have two children, both citizens of Kenya. He is also the honorary consul of Niger in Kenya, with a bar, restaurant and other businesses in Nairobi that employ more than 100 people.

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