Many Kenyans Express Outrage at New York Times Over Graphic Terror Attack Photo

January 16, 2019, 2:04 PM UTC

Several Kenyans took to Twitter to criticize the New York Times for publishing a graphic photo taken in the aftermath of a terrorist attack on Tuesday in Nairobi, with some users calling it insensitive and sensationalized.

The U.S. newspaper published a photo of two bullet-ridden bodies slouched over tables at a restaurant in the hotel and office complex targeted by an al-Qaeda affiliate group in the East African nation. The attack claimed 14 lives, according to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“We want to be respectful to the victims and to others affected by the attack,” the New York Times said in a post on Twitter (TWTR). “But we also believe it is important to give our readers a clear picture of the horror of an attack like this.”

Angry Twitter users told the New York Times (NYT) what they thought of the publication’s explanation. “It is insensitive & does not add value to the story,” tweeted Dennis Itumbi, a communications official with the Kenyan government.

The nation’s Information, Communication and Technology Secretary Joe Mucheru summoned foreign journalists in the country for a briefing on Thursday morning.

Africans have often used social media networks to complain about the negative portrayal of the continent that they say international media has tended to perpetuate instead of reporting on the region’s booming economies and emerging middle class.