Rice to Visit Violence-Wracked Kenya

President Bush announces Thursday that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will travel to Kenya to support efforts to end more than a month of politically inspired violence. More than 1,000 people have been killed and half a million more displaced.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

And as we just heard, he will not be stopping in Kenya, but Secretary of State Rice is, with this message to Kenya's leaders: End the violence, and make a full return to democracy. That's what former UN head Kofi Annan has been trying to do for three weeks. And today, he may be able to show some results. Today, he announced that the two sides - the president's party and the opposition party - have reached an agreement, calling for a review of the disputed vote in Kenya. NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton has the latest.

OFEIBEA QUIST-ARCTON: This agreement is not the full political powering-sharing deal Kofi Annan had hoped for this week, but it's a start, and a sign of some progress after weeks of blood-letting and ethnic turmoil in Kenya. Apart from a new constitution, addressing the issue of the flawed presidential vote and the possibility of fresh elections, also reportedly on the negotiating table is a South African-style justice and reconciliation commission. This would be to investigate ethnic killings and alleged police brutality. More than a thousand Kenyans have lost their lives since December's contested election results, and more than half a million have been driven from their homes. Negotiations to end the crisis are set to resume on Monday, the day the U.S. secretary of state is expected here in Nairobi. Condoleezza Rice will be carrying a tough message from President Bush to Kenya's leaders, that there must be an immediate halt to the violence, a full return to democracy, and justice for the victims of abuse.

Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR News, Nairobi.

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