The UK has issued a fresh travel advisory for British nationals traveling through the country citing the risk of kidnapping.
Westerners have been warned to be vigilant when vacationing at the coast and resort areas around Mombasa and Malindi. Tourist destination places like Narok, Naivasha, Nanyuki, and Meru have also been marked as potential terrorist kidnapping zone.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) reiterated caution in places frequented by foreigners including hotels, bars, restaurants, sports bars, night clubs, beaches, and sporting events among others.
FCO has advised against all but essential travel to:
- Areas within 60km of the Kenya-Somali border
- Garrisa County
- Lamu County (excluding Lamu Island and Manda Island)
- Areas of Tana River County North of the Tana river itself
- Within 15km of the coast from the Tana river down to the Galana (Athi-Galana-Sabaki) river
“If you travel to Lamu Island or Manda Island, you should do so by air to Manda airport and not by road…You should consider making personal contingency plans and refer to our advice on travel when planning your journeys,” FCO statement read.
The UK foreign office advisory comes less than two months after the United States listed Kenya among the global kidnapping hotspots in a new risk indicator that Washington introduced for travel advisories.
The UK was the fourth leading source of foreign tourists to Kenya last year when earnings from the sector jumped 37 percent to sh157 billion- the biggest increase in more than a decade.