Kenya reopens airspace to flights from Somalia

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Nairobi says goodwill move taken within the mutual curiosity of the 2 East African international locations.

Kenya on Thursday introduced it would reopen its airspace for flights to and from Somalia, a move welcomed by Mogadishu.

Kenya’s Foreign Ministry mentioned it has “taken due consideration of intercessions made and has decided to reopen Kenya’s airspace to all flights originating from Somalia and emanating from Kenya to Somalia”.

Nairobi halted all flights to and from Somalia in May, simply days after an obvious thaw in relations that had been strained since late final yr.

The goodwill measure has been taken within the mutual curiosity of the 2 East African international locations, the ministry mentioned, including that it hopes it would result in full normalisation of relations, “including diplomatic, trade and people-to-people linkages that have undergone undue strain”.

The ministry clarified that every one coronavirus protocols might be relevant for passengers coming to Kenya from Somalia.

The Somali authorities hailed Nairobi’s choice as a step that might easy over relations between the 2 international locations, which hit a low final December.

“The government of Somalia welcomes Kenya reopening its airspace with Somalia on Thursday. This move could pave the way for normalisation [of] the bilateral relations between the two neighbouring countries,” authorities spokesperson Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu mentioned on Twitter.

Somalia lower off diplomatic ties with Kenya in December final yr, accusing Nairobi of interfering in Mogadishu’s inner affairs.

Security, schooling and commerce relations between the 2 neighbours had been severed for some 5 months, till Mogadishu introduced in May that it was prepared to revive ties with Nairobi, citing the curiosity of each international locations.

However, simply days later, Kenya determined to halt air site visitors with Somalia, with out giving any purpose for the move.

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