Kenyan airspace still under threat, says US

Thursday March 3 2016

Tourists await to be frisked. United States Federal Aviation Administration has advised airlines to be more vigilant when flying into and out of Kenyan airports due to recent Al-Shabaab terror threat. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Tourists await to be frisked. United States Federal Aviation Administration has advised airlines to be more vigilant when flying into and out of Kenyan airports due to recent Al-Shabaab terror threat. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By NGARE KARIUKI
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Major airports in the country could still be in danger of attacks from the Al-Shabaab despite Kenya Airports recently retracting a memo calling for extra vigilance, the Nation has learned.

A security notice published by the United States’ Federation Aviation Administration (FAA) on February 26 advised airlines to be more vigilant when flying into and out of Kenyan airports. Incidentally, the advisory was published on the FAA website on the same day an internal memo was distributed to KAA’s airport managers and later leaked to the public.

HIGH RISK

“Due to extremist/militant activity, there is a risk to US civil aviation operating into, out of, within, or over the territory and airspace of Kenya at altitudes below Flight Level (FL) 260,” reads the FAA notice.

A follow-up notice says the US authorities had reason to believe Kenyan airspace and airport were in danger of attacks from the Al-Shabaab, despite KAA acting Managing Director Yatich Kangungo releasing a statement to the contrary.

“While primarily active in Somalia, Al-Shabaab, has demonstrated the capability and intent to conduct terrorist attacks in Kenya targeting government, civilian, and US/Western interests, to include aviation interests,” reads the document.