UAE extends ban on air travellers from Kenya

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.PHOTO/GETTYImages
Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. PHOTO/GETTYImages

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has extended the ban on Kenyans traveling to its territory indefinitely, restricting inbound flights from Nairobi and a host of other African countries.

In a notice, Emirates Airlines announced that it has extended the ban, which was to end on the eve of Christmas, until further notice.

The Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA) had announced a 48-hour suspension on all flights from Kenya to the Middle East nation on December 20, but on Wednesday, the Dubai-based carrier said that it has, in turn, extended its flights from Kenya suspension to comply with the directive that was to end on December 24.

“Until further notice, flights to and from Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Uganda are suspended. Passengers who have been in or transited through these countries in the last 14 days will not be allowed to enter or transit through Dubai,” said the notice from the airline.

The move is the latest restriction on global travel by UAE aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19 in the wake of the new Omicron variant.

The directive comes as a blow to the national carrier Kenya Airways, which had seen an increase in bookings on this route occasioned by the ongoing Dubai Expo 2020 exhibition.