MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Widows of SLDF leadership as well as from the civilian population photographed in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A 72 year old female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. The woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of human remains in an area notorious for mass grave sites in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Hevron Masike,40, a farmer who was shot by militia men of the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Hevron got up late at night to relieve himself and ran into a SLDF militia group out on an intimidation campaign. They shot him 3 times and then opened fire on his home, killing his wife and young son. Hevron survived but lost all his cattle and has been incapacitated ever since. He has steel plates in his let and a catheter through which he has to urinate. He cannot afford the twice monthly hospital check-ups and is likely to succumb to infection. He has no family to support him. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A Mt Elgon man with mental issues as a result of being a victim of violence from both sides in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This man had his ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF rebel movement. Soon thereafter he was brutally beaten by the Kenyan Army as part of their campaign to stamp out the SLDF through intimidating the local population into giving up any knowledge they might have of the movement. He has not recovered from those experiences three years later. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF because she would not pay taxes to support the rebel movement. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Three grieving woman in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Two of these woman lost their husbands to the SLDF and another lost her son when he was forcibly recruited. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Philice Kipteyo lost her husband, an assistant Chief in the region, to men of the Kenyan Armed forces in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. She last saw her husband in the hands of the military at a military camp in the region. He was bloodied and beaten and surrounded by three soldiers. She never saw him again, had no word from the military of government in terms of explanation or compensation and this is the third year she has had no word on her case. She has been offered a death certificate three times but refuses to accept this as it means the end of her case. As a result she has no land rights to her husbands property and no help with school fees for her children. This is a complex conflict instigated in part by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families t

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Deborah lost her husband to a group of militia men from the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. The SLDF militia accused Deborah's husband of giving information on the SLDF to government forces. They took him away and he joined the long list of people who have disapeared in the course of the Mt Elgon conflict. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF militia member in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF leadership spokesman photographed on his mothers land in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. He spent two and a half years in prison and has returned with new ambitions of being a Pastor in this troubled region. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Former SLDF militia members hide their identity during an interview in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Landless Internally Displaced People who have been facilitated by a local preacher squat on a small piece of land in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. These people have been moved off land they had claimed and settled. This move by the government is part of the controversial resettlement process in Mt Elgon and they are now forced to work on other people's land who has benefitted from the Kenyan Government's "random" land vetting program. Civilians in Kenya's western Mt.Elgon district near the border with Uganda have been twice-victimized in a little known conflict between Kenyan security forces and a militia group known as the Sabaot Land Defence Force (SLDF), forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.Since 2006 the SLDF has attacked thousands of civilians, killing, raping, and mutilating, in a complex mix of land disputes, criminality, and struggles for local power. The government's security response, initially lacklustre, was massively stepped up in early 2008 after Kenya's disputed elections by the introduction of the Kenyan armed forces. In a joint army-police operation, the security forces conducted mass round-ups of thousands of men and boys, tortured hundreds if not thousands in detention, and unlawfully killed dozens of others. Residents are supportive of action against the SLDF but have been horrified and traumatized by the way in which the operation has been carried out.Both the SLDF and the Kenyan security forces have been responsible for serious human rights abuses. To the extent that the fighting in Mt.Elgon has risen to the level of an armed conflict, both sides have committed serious violations of international humanitarian law (the "laws of war") that amount to war crimes. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Widows of SLDF leadership as well as from the civilian population photographed in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A 72 year old female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. The woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of human remains in an area notorious for mass grave sites in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Hevron Masike,40, a farmer who was shot by militia men of the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Hevron got up late at night to relieve himself and ran into a SLDF militia group out on an intimidation campaign. They shot him 3 times and then opened fire on his home, killing his wife and young son. Hevron survived but lost all his cattle and has been incapacitated ever since. He has steel plates in his let and a catheter through which he has to urinate. He cannot afford the twice monthly hospital check-ups and is likely to succumb to infection. He has no family to support him. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A Mt Elgon man with mental issues as a result of being a victim of violence from both sides in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This man had his ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF rebel movement. Soon thereafter he was brutally beaten by the Kenyan Army as part of their campaign to stamp out the SLDF through intimidating the local population into giving up any knowledge they might have of the movement. He has not recovered from those experiences three years later. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF because she would not pay taxes to support the rebel movement. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Three grieving woman in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Two of these woman lost their husbands to the SLDF and another lost her son when he was forcibly recruited. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Philice Kipteyo lost her husband, an assistant Chief in the region, to men of the Kenyan Armed forces in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. She last saw her husband in the hands of the military at a military camp in the region. He was bloodied and beaten and surrounded by three soldiers. She never saw him again, had no word from the military of government in terms of explanation or compensation and this is the third year she has had no word on her case. She has been offered a death certificate three times but refuses to accept this as it means the end of her case. As a result she has no land rights to her husbands property and no help with school fees for her children. This is a complex conflict instigated in part by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families t
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Deborah lost her husband to a group of militia men from the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. The SLDF militia accused Deborah's husband of giving information on the SLDF to government forces. They took him away and he joined the long list of people who have disapeared in the course of the Mt Elgon conflict. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF militia member in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF leadership spokesman photographed on his mothers land in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. He spent two and a half years in prison and has returned with new ambitions of being a Pastor in this troubled region. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Former SLDF militia members hide their identity during an interview in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the  tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the  tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)
 MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Landless Internally Displaced People who have been facilitated by a local preacher squat on a small piece of land in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces,  June 8, 2011. These people have been moved off land they had claimed and settled. This move by the government is part of the controversial resettlement process in Mt Elgon and they are now forced to work on other people's land who has benefitted from the Kenyan Government's "random" land vetting program. Civilians in Kenya's western Mt.Elgon district near the border with Uganda have been twice-victimized in a little known conflict between Kenyan security forces and a militia group known as the Sabaot Land Defence Force (SLDF), forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.Since 2006 the SLDF has attacked thousands of civilians, killing, raping, and mutilating, in a complex mix of land disputes, criminality, and struggles for local power. The government's security response, initially lacklustre, was massively stepped up in early 2008 after Kenya's disputed elections by the introduction of the Kenyan armed forces. In a joint army-police operation, the security forces conducted mass round-ups of thousands of men and boys, tortured hundreds if not thousands in detention, and unlawfully killed dozens of others. Residents are supportive of action against the SLDF but have been horrified and traumatized by the way in which the operation has been carried out.Both the SLDF and the Kenyan security forces have been responsible for serious human rights abuses. To the extent that the fighting in Mt.Elgon has risen to the level of an armed conflict, both sides have committed serious violations of international humanitarian law (the "laws of war") that amount to war crimes. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Widows of SLDF leadership as well as from the civilian population photographed in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A 72 year old female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. The woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of human remains in an area notorious for mass grave sites in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Hevron Masike,40, a farmer who was shot by militia men of the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Hevron got up late at night to relieve himself and ran into a SLDF militia group out on an intimidation campaign. They shot him 3 times and then opened fire on his home, killing his wife and young son. Hevron survived but lost all his cattle and has been incapacitated ever since. He has steel plates in his let and a catheter through which he has to urinate. He cannot afford the twice monthly hospital check-ups and is likely to succumb to infection. He has no family to support him. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A Mt Elgon man with mental issues as a result of being a victim of violence from both sides in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This man had his ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF rebel movement. Soon thereafter he was brutally beaten by the Kenyan Army as part of their campaign to stamp out the SLDF through intimidating the local population into giving up any knowledge they might have of the movement. He has not recovered from those experiences three years later. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A female victim of violence in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This woman had her ear cut off as an intimidation technique by the SLDF because she would not pay taxes to support the rebel movement. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Three grieving woman in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Two of these woman lost their husbands to the SLDF and another lost her son when he was forcibly recruited. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Helen, 27, a gang rape victim in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Helen was taken by men from the SLDF who gang-raped her, forced her to consume human excrement and urine, then took her to their leader who ordered her release. These men, who were known to Helen from her village, then raped her again and take her back to her husband saying that now she was HIV+. He subsequently left her. She has since remarried but has experienced no justice for the crimes comitted against her. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Philice Kipteyo lost her husband, an assistant Chief in the region, to men of the Kenyan Armed forces in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. She last saw her husband in the hands of the military at a military camp in the region. He was bloodied and beaten and surrounded by three soldiers. She never saw him again, had no word from the military of government in terms of explanation or compensation and this is the third year she has had no word on her case. She has been offered a death certificate three times but refuses to accept this as it means the end of her case. As a result she has no land rights to her husbands property and no help with school fees for her children. This is a complex conflict instigated in part by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families t

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Joseph Chebonya, 47, was shot 3 times and tortured by the SLDF in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. Joseph was awakened at midnight by 10 SLDF militia who stole all his cattle, tortured him for information on government soldier movement and then shot him three times in his leg, hip and buttocks with and AK47. He is a farmer and has 12 children to support, they cannot afford schoolfees as a result of his severe injuries. He has never seen any justice in his case. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Deborah lost her husband to a group of militia men from the SLDF in 2008 in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 9, 2011. The SLDF militia accused Deborah's husband of giving information on the SLDF to government forces. They took him away and he joined the long list of people who have disapeared in the course of the Mt Elgon conflict. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF militia member in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: A former SLDF leadership spokesman photographed on his mothers land in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. He spent two and a half years in prison and has returned with new ambitions of being a Pastor in this troubled region. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Former SLDF militia members hide their identity during an interview in an area notorious for conflict in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 11, 2011. This is a ongoing land conflict, the latest round instigated by in 2006 by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide up and resettle for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. This is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Images of an illegal Ndorobo settlement in the Chep Kitale region of the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sobot Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. Disputes over this area are at the root of clashes over land in this area, the Ndorobo were intitially moved by the Kenyan Government but aborted this deal as their new settlement area meant a loss of cultural identity as they were moved to a place with Sobot people. A group of Ndorobo then moved back to their ancestral land and thus began a series of bloody land conflicts in the Mt Elgon. The latest round is a conflict instigated by local men who formed the SLDF militia in order to protect land which the government wanted to divide into small plots for redistribution, thus threatening long established land ownership and protocols in the area. The SLDF used extreme violence as both a recruitment tool and an intimidation technique on local residents who did not want to support their movement. The Kenyan army then came in and overcompensated, both the SLDF and the Kenyan Army and Police inflicted severe casualties on the residents of Mt Elgon, with torture, rape and multiple killings a feature of the conflict through 2007 and 2008. Over 300 disapearences of Mt Elgon residents took place, with bodies dumpted in remote forest, mass graves and military interference ensuring that many families to this day have no idea what happened to their relatives. The Government has made the obtaining of Death Certificates very difficult to come by. Seven years must pass before a missing person can be declared dead in Kenya. As a result widows have been unable to claim insurance, land rights, school fees and bursaries of any kind, causing entire families to suffer long after the official ceasefire in the Mt Elgon conflict. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

MT ELGON, KENYA, JUNE 2011: Landless Internally Displaced People who have been facilitated by a local preacher squat on a small piece of land in the tumultous Mt Elgon region of Kenya, a place of severe land clashes between the Sabout Land Defence Force and Kenyan Armed Forces, June 8, 2011. These people have been moved off land they had claimed and settled. This move by the government is part of the controversial resettlement process in Mt Elgon and they are now forced to work on other people's land who has benefitted from the Kenyan Government's "random" land vetting program. Civilians in Kenya's western Mt.Elgon district near the border with Uganda have been twice-victimized in a little known conflict between Kenyan security forces and a militia group known as the Sabaot Land Defence Force (SLDF), forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.Since 2006 the SLDF has attacked thousands of civilians, killing, raping, and mutilating, in a complex mix of land disputes, criminality, and struggles for local power. The government's security response, initially lacklustre, was massively stepped up in early 2008 after Kenya's disputed elections by the introduction of the Kenyan armed forces. In a joint army-police operation, the security forces conducted mass round-ups of thousands of men and boys, tortured hundreds if not thousands in detention, and unlawfully killed dozens of others. Residents are supportive of action against the SLDF but have been horrified and traumatized by the way in which the operation has been carried out.Both the SLDF and the Kenyan security forces have been responsible for serious human rights abuses. To the extent that the fighting in Mt.Elgon has risen to the level of an armed conflict, both sides have committed serious violations of international humanitarian law (the "laws of war") that amount to war crimes. (Photo by Brent Stirton/Reportage for Human Rights Watch.)

show thumbnails
caption