Image: Displaced Kenyans in Eldoret, Kenya
Riccardo Gangale  /  AP
Displaced people in the Showground camp in Eldoret, Kenya, Sunday, Feb. 3.
updated 2/3/2008 3:48:38 AM ET 2008-02-03T08:48:38

Kenya's opposition leader called Sunday for the African Union to send peacekeepers to stem violence sparked by the country's disputed presidential election.

"The AU should bring in peacekeepers because the violence in Kenya is appalling," Raila Odinga told The Associated Press in his home village in western Kenya.

Western Kenya has been at the center of fighting that has killed more than 800 people and engulfed the country since the Dec. 27 election, which returned President Mwai Kibaki to power after a tally that foreign and local observers say was rigged. The violence has often degenerated into ethnic clashes over decades-old grudges about land and resources.

On Saturday, young men from rival ethnic groups hunted each other through the streets of the western town of Eldoret, burning houses and blocking roads a day after the country's political foes agreed to try to end weeks of violence.

Both men who signed Friday's deal were still talking tough. Kibaki accused his opponents of orchestrating the violence, and Odinga said Kibaki's "aggressive statements" were undermining efforts to quell the fighting.

With the two sides trading blame, as they have done repeatedly since the outset of the crisis, the fighting continued unabated.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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