Kenya reopens airspace to flights to and from Somalia

Empty seats are seen at a departure lounge while a grounded aircrafts stand on the tarmac at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi on April 3, 2020. - In addition to a night curfew in a bid to curb the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Kenya suspended all travel for all persons coming into Kenya from any country with reported COVID-19 coronavirus cases. (Photo by TONY KARUMBA / AFP) (Photo by TONY KARUMBA/AFP via Getty Images

Kenya announced on Thursday that it has decided to re-open its airspace to all flights originating from Somalia and emanating from Kenya to Somalia.

The country’s ministry of foreign affairs stated, “this goodwill measure has been made in the mutual interest of our two countries and in the hope that it will cause the full normalisation of bilateral relations between Kenya and Somalia, including diplomatic, trade and people to people linkages that have undergone undue strain.”

“The Government and People of Kenya remain true partners for the peace and prosperity of Somalia and look forward to a renewal of the enduring bonds of friendship and partnership between Kenya and Somalia.” The ministry added.

It further advised that existing COVID-19 protocols applicable to all passengers travelling to Kenya remain in place as communicated by the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority.

They include among others possession of a valid COVID-19 negative PCR test certificate, conducted within 96 hours before travel by all passengers coming to the country.

Kenya on May 11 suspended all flights to Somalia, with the exception of humanitarian deliveries and medical evacuation flights.