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Police say airport 'blast' just 'loose light bulb'

17 January 2014, 17:58

Nairobi - An explosion at a cafe outside the main airport in the capital Nairobi sparked panic late Thursday, but police insisted it was only caused by a "loose light bulb".

No casualties were reported in the incident at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), the region's busiest transport hub.

Britain's foreign office updated its travel warning to Kenya on Friday, noting that "a small explosion reportedly took place at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport".

Specialist bomb squads were called to the airport but Kenyan police chief David Kimaiyo said it was simply a small fire set off after a light bulb fell down.

"It was not a blast... some papers caught fire after a loose light bulb fell into a dustbin that caused panic," Kimaiyo said. "When the loose bulb fell down it burst making an explosive sound."

Police on Friday were also investigating the bullet-riddled body of a man, found in car alleged to have been seen racing from the airport shortly after the incident.

Fire gutted part of Nairobi's JKIA airport in August, which investigators said was caused by an electrical fault.

Since Kenyan troops invaded southern Somalia in October 2011 to help oust the neighbouring country's Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab insurgents, it has been hit by a series of attacks.

The Shebab claimed September's attack on Nairobi's Westgate mall, in which at least 67 people were killed.

Grenades have been hurled into restaurants in crowded areas in Nairobi as well as on the popular tourist Indian Ocean coast, and there has been a string of attacks in the remote northeast region bordering Somalia.




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