Published: March 05. 2013 4:00AM PST
Voters head to polling stations at dawn Monday in the Kibera area of Nairobi, Kenya.
Millions of Kenyans poured into polling stations Monday to cast their ballots in a crucial, anxiously awaited presidential election, and as the voting proceeded relatively smoothly a real chance emerged that a candidate charged with crimes against humanity could win the race.
In the early vote count, Uhuru Kenyatta, the scion of a political family who has been accused by the International Criminal Court of financing death squads, held a commanding lead of 57 percent to 39 percent over the second-place candidate, Raila Odinga, Kenya’s prime minister. Election observers cautioned that the preliminary results might not be representative of the countrywide vote, but Kenyatta’s lead remained strong from the moment the first tallies came in.
The United States and other Western allies of Kenya have warned of “consequences" if Kenyatta wins, though few Western officials have been willing to discuss exactly what kind of repercussions or sanctions this could bring.
Voter turnout Monday was tremendous, election officials said, starting hours before dawn, with lines of voters stretching nearly a mile long.
— New York Times News Service
Pete Muller / New York Times News Service