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UK removes travel advisory against Kenya

18 June 2015, 18:49 William Korir

Nairobi - The United Kingdom has removed a travel advisory warning its citizens from travelling to certain places in Kenya, saying that security has improved and threat levels are lower.

The UK's Foreign Office stated that areas along Kenya's Coast which houses some of the country's leading holiday destinations would not be affected by travel advisories.

" The area to which the FCO advise against all but essential travel does not include Kenya’s safari destinations in the national parks, reserves and wildlife conservancies; including the Aberdares National Park, Amboseli, Laikipia, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara, Meru, Mount Kenya, Samburu, Shimba Hills, Tsavo, nor does it include the beach resorts of Mombasa, Kilifi, Watamu and Diani, " the office said Thursday evening in a statement.

The Foreign Office however insisted that areas within 60 kilometres of the border with Somalia as well as Garissa County were all still written off for those not in need to travel to the specified areas.

" There is a high threat from terrorism, including kidnapping. The main threat comes from extremists linked to Al Shabaab, a militant group that has carried out attacks in Kenya in response to Kenya’s military intervention in Somalia," it stated on the mentioned areas.

The areas include Lamu, which was recently attacked by Shabaab militants and the eastern Nairobi area of Eastleigh, which houses thousands of Somalis.

Several terrorist attacks have taken place in Garissa County in 2015, including an attack on Garissa University College on 2 April 2015 in which at least 148 people were killed. More recently, attacks have taken place on police vehicles on the road between Garissa and Dadaab

In June and July 2014 attacks in Lamu and Tana River counties on the Kenyan coast are reported to have killed at least 85 people. Al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

There has been a spate of small-scale grenade, bomb and armed attacks in Nairobi (especially the area of Eastleigh), Mombasa, and North Eastern Province. On 16 May 2014, there were explosions at Gikomba Market on the edges of the Eastleigh district in Nairobi. Further attacks are likely.

On 22 November 2014, there was an attack on a bus in Mandera county near the Somali border. Twenty eight people are reported to have been killed.

On 2 December 2014, there was an attack at a quarry in Mandera county near the Somali border. Reports indicate that at least 30 people were killed. The FCO advise against all but essential travel to within 60km of the Kenya-Somalia border.

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