The Kenya Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced reopening airspace with Somalia after closing it for several weeks.
In the statement to the Somali Foreign Affairs Ministry released on June 10th, the Kenya Ministry of Foreign affairs asserted that the move was a result of goodwill shaped by mutual interests of both countries.
Show of goodwill
“The Foreign Affairs Minsitry of the Republic of Kenya…has the honour to inform that the Government of Kenya has taken due intercessions considerations and has decided to reopen Kenya’s airspace to all flights coming from Somalia and leaving Kenya to Somalia,” the statement read.
“This goodwill measure has been made in the mutual interest of both countries and in the hope that it will cause the full normalization of bilateral relations between Kenya and Somalia, which include diplomatic, trade and people to people linkage that have undergone undue strain.”
The Kenyan government said that they remained true partners of peace and prosperity with Somalia, stating that they looked forward to renewing the old severed bonds of friendship and partnership.
The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority confirmed that COVID-19 protocols would be adhered to at the airport. Among the measures would be travelers travelling into Kenya have a COVID-19 negative PCR test, done 96 hours before the flight. However, children under five will not take the PCR test and having the certificate.
Travellers would also fill locator forms with the Ministry of Health and submit daily health information to the jitenge platform for 14 consecutive days.
Kenya closed its airspace with Somalia following the severance of diplomatic ties between both countries on May 11th. KCAA confirmed the ban, suspending all flights into and out of Kenya to Somalia. Kenya then reiterated the ban on May 31st.
Kenya and Somalia have had a turbulent diplomatic relationship, with Somalia accusing Kenya of meddling in domestic politics ahead of the now postponed elections.
Govt of Kenya announces re-opening of airspace to flights to and from Somalia pic.twitter.com/1XoinmfKKZ
— Samira Sawlani (@samirasawlani) June 10, 2021