The Mau Mau Insurgency in Kenya
The Mau Mau was a secret insurgent group in Kenya that was mainly made of of people from the Kikuyu ethnic group and sworn to expel Kenya's white settlers. There was a problem with land shortages as a considerable amount of Kikuyu land had been taken up by white settlement. The Kenya African Union (KAU) under the leadership of Jomo Kenyatta petitioned Britain with Kenya's greavences, but Britain did little to appease them. This led many Kenyans to believe that any progress could not be achieved through peaceful means. A series of events, including the assassination of British supporter Senior Chief Waruhiu, prompted the British government to declare a state of emergency. On the very same day the British arrested Kenyatta and five other African nationalists and KAU leaders. Most fighting during the Mau Mau insurgency took place in the Central Province and included attacks on police stations, government offices, and white settler farms. While the British were fighting the insurgents in the mountain forests, they also took incredibly strict measures against civilians, including putting them in special camps. British troops also harassed the general population, and night raids, and collecting, harassing, and screening residents of slums became common. The situation ended when the state of emergency was ended in 1960 and Kenyatta was released. Kenyatta later became prime minister in 1963 and president in 1964 when Kenya became a republic.
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