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UK asked to review travel advisories against Kenya

13 November 2014, 16:00 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi – The National Assembly Committee on Defense and Foreign Relations has called on UK government to review the travel advisories issued to its citizens visiting the country saying the Kenyan government has put in place proper security measures.

The committee’s chairman, Ndun'gu Githinji, said reviewing and lifting of the travel advisories will enable good international cooperation and the recovery of the struggling Tourism sector as closure of hotels in the Coast region has led to low income generation, loss of jobs and discouraged investment.

The UK government issued travel advisories to its citizens early this year following high insecurity levels in the country from the Al-Shabaab militia.

“The UK government needs to review the travel advisories because a lot of resources are being invested in the security sector such as increasing intelligence, hiring more police officers and proper manning of entry border points,” said Githinji.

He also urged the UK government to remain committed to the signed Defense Cooperation Agreement with Kenya particularly in fast-tracking the implementation of the treaty by supporting capacity building and peace initiative Kenya is engaging in through AMISOM operation in Somalia to weed out Al-Shabaab.

“We ask the UK government to cooperate with Kenya especially in pushing for the approval of our security agendas in the UN Security Council like it did last time. UK should also be in forefront of putting pressure internationally for implementation of sanctions on those leaders flouting the signed peace agreements,” said Githinji.

“We want gains yielded to be maintained in politically unstable nations such as South Sudan and implementation of sanctions against leaders defying sanctions will help in restoring peace. We cannot allow innocent people to suffer when leaders enjoy security in other countries,” he added.

However, Githinji warned that the UK soldiers training in the country will be punished under the Kenyan laws as provided in the Constitution without any external influence.

The UK Chairman of Foreign Policy in the House of Commons, Richard Ottaway who paid the Defense committee a courtesy call at Parliament Buildings, assured that his government will look into Kenya’s raised concerns.

Ottaway confirmed that the UK government is working on some issues received from Kenya including the need to review the travel advisories, the enforced Miraa ban among others.

He further assured that two governments’ partnership will be maintained for mutual economic development and growth.

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