Kenya Stalemate Frustrates Negotiators

Stonewalling by Kenya rivals paralyzing talks
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 26, 2008 3:45 AM CST
Kenyan cameramen work during a press conference of the government under a picture of Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki in Nairobi, Kenya, Sunday Feb. 24 2008. Kenya's rival politicians are still far apart...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Kenya's peace talks have ground to a standstill and the task of coaxing the country's two rival parties into an agreement is beginning to try even the patience of former UN secretary-general and lead negotiator Kofi Annan, reports the BBC. The two sides cannot agree on a power-sharing deal and aides say an increasingly exasperated Annan is beginning to feel like a "prisoner of peace."

Opposition leader Raila Odinga and President Mwai Kibaki are reportedly in disagreement over what powers the prime minister post created for Odinga should have. Annan, who has been in Kenya for over a month, made it clear he felt mediators had done their work. "I'm now asking the party leaders to do theirs," he said after meetings with the men. Negotiators began after some 1,500 Kenyans were killed in ethnic violence following December's controversial presidential election.