WASHINGTON: The United States on Tuesday stressed Kenya carry out a transparent investigation into the murder of senior journalist and anchorperson Arshad Sharif on the outskirts of the capital, Nairobi.
Sharif was shot dead by the Kenyan police Sunday night after his car drove through a police barrier in the Magadi area, according to the Kenyan police.
The Kenyan authorities said the killing was a case of "mistaken identity". The journalist's death sparked outrage in Pakistan and there have been calls for an investigation into his killing.
US State Department spokesperson Ned Price urged the Kenyan authorities to investigate the incident and condoled Sharif's death. “We’re deeply saddened by the death of Arshad Sharif," he said.
“We encourage a full investigation by the Government of Kenya into his death. It’s not entirely clear that we know all the circumstances at this point regarding what led to his death, but we do urge a full investigation,” the spokesperson said while offering condolences to the aggrieved family and Pakistani journalists.
The US official was also asked about how the US was helping journalists facing threats around the world.
Price said that it’s difficult for him to speak with any specificity regarding what we could do with a particular individual, but we have programs around the world in the first instance to bolster protections for those who are exercising what is another universal right, the right to freedom of expression, the right to information.
“And it’s clear through his work that Arshad Sharif was dedicated to that fundamental right of freedom of expression – took him around the world. His work was known around the world.”
USAID has a number of programmes to work with governments around the world to bolster those rights, to bolster independent media, he added.