The army chief has said he is “shocked” by allegations that British soldiers may have been involved in the murder of a Kenyan woman.
General Mark Carleton-Smith said he was determined to work with authorities to establish the facts of Agnes Wanjiru’s murder.
The body of Wanjiru, who was 21 years old, was found in a septic tank at the Lions Court Hotel in the town of Nanyuki, near the Batuk camp (British Army Training Unit of Kenya), two months after his disappearance in March 2012. She had been stabbed, Kenyan investigators later concluded.
In a sentence shared on Twitter, Carleton-Smith said: “I am sure you are all as shocked as I am by the recent allegations surrounding the murder of Agnes Wanjiru in Nanyuki, Kenya, in 2012. I want you to know that I am determined to support the proper authorities to establish the facts of the problem as soon as possible. “
However, he did not say whether that should include an investigation by the Royal Military Police.
Defense Secretary Ben Wallace has said he is awaiting a request from Kenya for help in finding Wanjiru’s killer. A defense source told the Palestinian Authority news agency: “The defense secretary has been impatient with the pace of this and has directed his full cooperation. He has worked with the military police and the Kenyans to make sure his investigation is not hampered. “
The Sunday Times reported that a soldier accused of the murder was named by his comrades after he allegedly confessed to the murder and that another soldier reported the murder to senior officers at the time, but the military took no action.
Labor has asked the government to investigate any possible “cover-up.” Shadow Defense Secretary John Healey described Wanjiru’s assassination as “appalling” and called on ministers to act on “reports of serious British Army failures exposed in this case.”
He added: “There has been no investigation led by the Ministry of Defense of the soldiers involved and no investigation into why the Ministry of Defense did not respond when Kenyan detectives called for help. Nine years later, justice must now be done for Agnes and her family. “
Wanjiru dropped out of high school and later became a sex worker to care for her baby. Witnesses last saw her on the night of March 31, 2012 leaving a Nanyuki bar accompanied by two British soldiers.
His body was later discovered behind a room where the soldiers had been housed, with missing body parts and a stab wound.
According to the Sunday Times, a Kenyan judge who presided over the 2019 investigation concluded that Wanjiru had been killed by one or two British soldiers. Njeri Thuku said: “I have formed the opinion that Agnes was killed by British soldiers. It may have been one or two. But the truth is that they were British soldiers because they were dressed in their uniform ”.
The judge said a broken mirror and blood were found in a room at the Lions Court Hotel and that it may have been a “cover up.” She ordered two more criminal investigations. Despite investigations by Kenyan police and Ministry of Defense investigators, no one was brought to justice, the Sunday Times reported.
Wanjiru’s daughter, now 10 years old, is cared for by Agnes’s sister Rose, who told the newspaper: “We are poor, but we will not be silent. I know the British soldiers killed her. All I can do now is pray they get caught. “
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism