Kenya president signs new security law which critics say infringes on civil liberties

Kenya's president signed into law a contentious bill saying it will help the country fight terrorism, but which critics say will be used to crush dissent by curbing constitutionally guaranteed civil liberties.

President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a national broadcast Friday that the new law does not contravene the Bill of Rights in the constitution. He said the intention of the law is to protect the lives and property of all citizens.

Fistfights and scuffles erupted in parliament between pro-government and opposition legislators Thursday over the Security Law. Opposition legislators said the government rushed the bill through parliament disregarding procedures. The opposition said government did not give time for the public to understand the implications of the law and to give their views.