31st October - The country has remained relatively peaceful since the last KTF update dated 25th October and there has only been one reported incident near the Somali Border.
This occurred at Mandera, a few kms from the Somali border, and involved a Kenya Government vehicle ferrying examination materials.
The location is well within the 150 km buffer zone that is offlimits for all safaris. There have been threats issued by sections of the Al Shabaab insurgents and directly linked to the military intervention by Kenyan military forces in Somalia.
Security therefore remains heightened in most parts of the City and its environs. Kenya’s security forces recorded a major success with the arrest of three suspects after intercepting a cache of arms in a local residential estate.
One of the suspects was arraigned in court and charged with offenses related to the two grenade attacks in the city. He has since been convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment.
Security surveillance in the key urban areas has been stepped up and residents of the City have been urged to be extra vigilant.
Any suspicious persons or activity should be immediately reported to the Police for follow up action.
Tourists are continuing to arrive in the country for their holidays as planned and the key issues to note are as follows:‐
1. We reaffirm that no safaris will be conducted in the proximity of the Kenya‐Somali border and this is the area marked in red in the attached
Safari Map of Kenya. This buffer zone is in line with existing recommendations issued by several of our source market countries.
2. Kenya’s National Parks and Reserves and key tourism attractions are located well away from the 150 km buffer zone as follows: ‐
• to Malindi: 112 km
• to Mombasa: 229 km
• to South Coast (Diani Beach): 261 km
• to Tsavo East: 318 km
• to Tsavo West: 428km
• to Amboseli: 498 km
• to Lake Nakuru: 504km
• to Lake Naivasha: 436km
• to Maasai Mara: 616km
• to Samburu: 269km
3. Within Nairobi, the two recent incidents occurred in the downtown area of Nairobi which is not normally frequented by tourists. The map below indicates the affected areas, East of Nairobi, which are located in the zone marked in red.
KTF recommends that this area be off‐limits to tourists until the present situation is fully stabilized. The popular tourist class facilities are all located to the West and North of Nairobi.
4. All tourist class establishments have instituted tighter security surveillance in order to ensure that visitors are safe. The threat posed by the Al Shabaab insurgents cannot be ignored or taken lightly and the industry stakeholders appreciate the need to be vigilant.
5. The Lamu Archipelago and its environs, though located within the 150 kms buffer, continues to enjoy very high security as this was the area
affected by the initial kidnappings.
Visitors have started to stream back in to Lamu and with the continued security measures and 24hr surveillance, it is expected that the situation will soon normalize.
The Tourism Industry in Kenya takes full cognizance of the concerns visitors may have while planning their safaris to Kenya.
In this regard, the Kenya Tourism Federation maintains a 24Hr Safety Center which advises the industry of any issues of concern and we take this opportunity to reassure all intending visitors that every effort will be taken to address your safety while on safari in Kenya.
We urge all intending visitors to Kenya to book their safaris only with reputable and licensed operators and when in doubt, please contact:
The Kenya Tourism Federation, Safety and Communication Center
Lucy Karume - Chair, Kenya Tourism Federation