Kenya coronavirus: Testing truckers at Tanzania border created good situations for covid to unfold


NAMANGA, KENYA — When Habibu Juma Ali lined up his truck stuffed with Whitedent toothpaste behind a whole lot of others ready to cross the border from Tanzania into Kenya, he didn’t anticipate to attend two weeks to get examined for the novel coronavirus.

Truckers are permitted to drive throughout the in any other case closed border between East Africa’s two greatest nations, however for the primary two months of the pandemic, they needed to get examined on the crossing. Greater than 150 examined constructive and had been turned again. The remainder spent interminable days ready for his or her outcomes.

Ali has spent his days on each the Kenyan and Tanzanian sides of the border city of Namanga, the place, whenever you’re on foot, you may cross the border as simply as crossing a highway. He has purchased meals at retailers, exchanged cash at banks and, at night time, he sleeps huddled with different drivers on cardboard mats beneath his truck. They prepare dinner and share meals with newcomers as the road of ready vehicles grows. Others discover racier methods to go the time — chewing khat, taking pictures cube, hiring intercourse staff.

The truckers’ rising net of interactions factors to a dilemma at worldwide borders: easy methods to let important commerce by with out the virus slipping in with it. At a gathering Friday to resolve the rising disaster, Kenya and Tanzania agreed that beginning subsequent week, drivers should get unfavourable take a look at certificates earlier than beginning their journeys. For lots of the 1000’s of truckers who’ve already spent days or perhaps weeks in Namanga ready for exams, that call may have come too late.

“If my outcomes come again constructive, who can say how many individuals I’d have contaminated?” stated Ali, 47. “I’m nearly certain most of us right here have now bought the virus.”

The porous border, inefficient testing and restricted contact tracing made this city a really perfect place for the coronavirus to unfold. Truckers say the lengthy waits left them extra prone to the virus and price them money and time. The city’s enterprise folks, who work together with them each day, had been caught between concern of contagion and unwillingness to surrender their livelihoods.

Truck drivers distribute items but additionally typically illnesses, as turned particularly clear throughout HIV’s unfold in Africa, the place they carry the virus at double the rate of the overall inhabitants. Truckers’ contacts are more durable to hint than these of people that’ve traveled by airplane, as an illustration, the place passenger lists can be found. In Namanga, truck drivers have blended into the city as they wait, making contact tracing practically unimaginable.

Truck drivers wait in a crowd on the border put up in Namanga on Wednesday. Whereas ready for his coronavirus take a look at outcomes, Habibu Juma Ali, middle entrance in a pink masks, has purchased meals at retailers and exchanged cash at banks in Namanga, interacting with a number of folks within the city.

A Kenyan customs officer points clearance certificates for truck drivers at an workplace in Namanga. Truckers say the lengthy waits for clearance left them extra prone to the virus and price them money and time.

A Kenyan health-care employee speaks with a truck driver ready for his clearance certificates.

TOP: Truck drivers wait in a crowd on the border put up in Namanga on Wednesday. Whereas ready for his coronavirus take a look at outcomes, Habibu Juma Ali, middle entrance in a pink masks, has purchased meals at retailers and exchanged cash at banks in Namanga, interacting with a number of folks within the city. BOTTOM LEFT: A Kenyan customs officer points clearance certificates for truck drivers at an workplace in Namanga. Truckers say the lengthy waits for clearance left them extra prone to the virus and price them money and time. BOTTOM RIGHT: A Kenyan health-care employee speaks with a truck driver ready for his clearance certificates.

Kenya’s exams on the border have been the one actual indication of the extent of the outbreak in Tanzania: The federal government hasn’t launched knowledge on new instances since April 29. Tanzanian President John Magufuli has stated numbers are falling, however a U.S. Embassy statement final week stated that many hospitals within the former capital, Dar es Salaam, had been overwhelmed and that the probability of contracting the virus in that metropolis was “extraordinarily excessive.”

Tanzania has taken fewer day-to-day measures to manage the virus’s unfold than Kenya, which has a dusk-to-dawn curfew, necessary mask-wearing and localized lockdowns. Kenya has over 1,100 confirmed instances and has been typically praised for the seriousness of its response, regardless of crackdowns on curfew offenders which have killed more than a dozen people and evictions of slum dwellers, who’ve been left homeless at a time when hygiene and sanitation are paramount.

In Namanga, as a result of contact tracing is finished solely as soon as somebody exams constructive, the lag in getting outcomes means truckers can rack up a whole lot of contacts earlier than realizing their standing. And since Kenyan authorities merely flip round contaminated Tanzanian truck drivers as an alternative of quarantining them on the border, they lose the chance to interview them in particular person about contacts.

“Contacts are traced utilizing telephones or bodily by neighborhood well being volunteers, space leaders or safety businesses,” stated Esther Somoire, who directs the well being response within the Kenyan county the place Namanga is situated. “However it’s difficult, particularly at worldwide borders like Namanga.”

The rising variety of constructive instances on the border escalated right into a confrontation between the Kenyan and Tanzanian governments. A Tanzanian regional authorities official stated on Wednesday that Kenya was falsely reporting constructive take a look at outcomes for Tanzanian truckers as “a deliberate sabotage strategy designed by Kenya in opposition to our tourism trade,” and that the federal government had accomplished its personal exams on these drivers they usually got here again unfavourable. The 2 nations compete over profitable wildlife tourism.

In his day by day briefings, Kenya’s well being minister, Mutahi Kagwe, has known as the border posts “sizzling spots” however has offered assurances that diligent testing means contaminated Tanzanian truck drivers aren’t “in our midst.” Friday’s settlement stipulated that the outcomes of all additional exams of truck drivers might be launched publicly however “with out mentioning the nationality of the contaminated.”

In Europe, many nations have exempted truck drivers transporting items from checks at their borders. The US and Canada don’t take a look at truckers crossing their 5,500-mile border. In East Africa, although, testing is extra widespread: Uganda has discovered dozens of contaminated Kenyan truck drivers, and Zambia closed its border to Tanzanian truckers after an outbreak on the border created a sizzling spot there.

Truckers like Ali who’re hoping to enter Kenya had been at their wits’ finish Wednesday as they waited hours for well being officers to take throat swabs. Dozens of them had been instructed to attend in a naked concrete room with no seats. Some crouched with their heads of their arms, attempting to nap whereas ready. When a well being official confirmed up, he requested the drivers to apply social distancing, and the gang lunged at him, many saying it was ridiculous to anticipate them to distance after they weren’t even given a spot to take a seat.

“Actually, truthfully, you aren’t stopping, you might be spreading,” stated Robert Kimani, a Kenyan driver transporting tomatoes from Iringa, in central Tanzania, who had his personal cause to be indignant. He had initially been examined 5 days earlier, however when outcomes had been introduced, his title was lacking from the listing.

“There have been 4 of us like that. They didn’t even have the courtesy to inform me what occurred,” he stated in an interview later. “Within the days I’ve been ready, the place have I not been? I’ve been throughout. Possibly the virus could be throughout, too.”

Kenyan well being officers declined to touch upon the lacking outcomes.

A social employee, left, provides containers of condoms to Marcy Mwajuma Kioko, middle, and Jenny Heri at a well being middle in Namanga. Kioko and Heri are at excessive danger for contracting the novel coronavirus of their jobs as intercourse staff.

Marcy Mwajuma Kioko, 32, locations condoms in a dispenser situated within the males’s restroom on the Namanga border put up.

LEFT: A social employee, left, provides containers of condoms to Marcy Mwajuma Kioko, middle, and Jenny Heri at a well being middle in Namanga. Kioko and Heri are at excessive danger for contracting the novel coronavirus of their jobs as intercourse staff. RIGHT: Marcy Mwajuma Kioko, 32, locations condoms in a dispenser situated within the males’s restroom on the Namanga border put up.

All who depend on the border city’s financial system, from store house owners to intercourse staff, are warily persevering with enterprise as ordinary. For many, that entails crossing the invisible border that runs by it.

Jenny Heri, 39, and Marcy Mwajuma Kioko, 32, stated they receives a commission to have intercourse with six to 10 trucker purchasers a day, largely Tanzanians. On Wednesday, they had been on the Kenyan facet to select up a whole lot of condoms at a authorities clinic, in addition to change Tanzanian shillings into Kenyan shillings to wire house to their youngsters. Kioko put among the condoms in a dispenser in a males’s lavatory on the entrance to the border put up earlier than searching for extra purchasers among the many drivers ready on the Tanzanian facet.

Heri stated that she and different intercourse staff have adopted new practices, like not going through purchasers whereas having intercourse and sanitizing the elements of their our bodies their purchasers contact, however that they knew they had been placing themselves at excessive danger.

“We all know it’s not good,” she stated. “However this job we do, we do to make sufficient so our youngsters don’t endure.”

Enterprise folks in Namanga who interacted with Kimani, the motive force who stated his first take a look at pattern disappeared, described a deep sense of fear about coming into contact with so many truck drivers each day.

“If they’re actually critical, they’d comply with up with us,” stated Elizabeth Wanjiku, 42, who runs a small cash change. “Or authorities ought to give us cash to remain house in the event that they wish to defend us.”

In contrast to Ali, who sleeps beneath his truck, Kimani can afford to remain at Joseph Kitalama’s guesthouse, the place sanitizer is offered. However Kitalama’s rooms are sometimes rented and shared by strangers trying to save cash.

“Individuals are doing a lot to guard themselves — washing arms on a regular basis, making their very own masks out of material,” stated Kitalama. “We’re doing our greatest, however the authorities also needs to do its half.”





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Balcony church positive factors reputation in Kenya amid pandemic


Coronavirus restrictions don’t cease Machira in a rustic the place conventional church providers have been suspended. The person who calls himself a “kids’s preacher” calls out Bible classes between songs.

Machira has taken his “Balcony to Balcony” service on the highway since Kenya’s first case was present in mid-March. It has grow to be fairly fashionable, the preacher on the All Saints Cathedral of the Anglican Church of Kenya stated.

“When corona opened its floodgates to Kenya and the world, one of many issues that was shortly minimize off is the fellowship of believers,” he stated on a latest afternoon.

“However I additionally assume that is the best alternative that has ever arisen to the church, cause being we have now bought cause to exit on the streets. … Jesus typically would go to the temple however his major ministry was out within the fields, out within the streets,” he added.

Many kids in Kenya don’t have entry to church providers on-line, he stated.

Machira stated the concept for the cell service got here from Lilian Mbere, a Sunday faculty trainer who had tried get kids to sing hymns from their balconies to cut back the monotony of staying at residence.

Mbere stated she discovered the response overwhelming and invited Machira to conduct a service.

“I’ve seen a number of development within the kids,” she stated. “After I typically delay and I’m not in my balcony by 2 p.m., they normally come asking if they’re having a service at the moment. It’s like a lifestyle for now … Typically when I’m in my home I can hear them singing the songs we have now taught them.”

Kenya has reported greater than 1,000 virus instances. Restrictions have been uncomfortable for a lot of, particularly those that should work day by day to feed their households.

Machira stated the “Balcony to Balcony” service has visited 16 places to this point, and his staff has two necessities earlier than arriving. The housing ought to have balconies so social distancing measures will be noticed. And everybody on the compound should consent to the service’s presence.

“It has been stunning, kids coming collectively worshiping God, praising God, and naturally that doesn’t occur till all these members of the neighborhood have agreed to ask us over,” Machira stated.

No less than as soon as they’ve been invited to a neighborhood solely to discover a member of that neighborhood has not consented and so they needed to go away, he stated.

The opposite problem has been the climate. Kenya has been experiencing heavy rainfalls which have led to floods and the deaths of greater than 200 folks in latest weeks.

One resident, Wanjiru Mbiriri, stated it’s been tough for her 2-year-old to regulate to staying at residence on Sundays however the “Balcony to Balcony” service has restored some normalcy.

Mbiriri would love for the visits to proceed as a result of “they’ve helped dilute the concern.”

Copyright 2020 The Related Press. All rights reserved. This materials might not be printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed with out permission.



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Kenya bans journey out and in of Nairobi to battle coronavirus


In Kenya, President Uhuru Kenyatta mentioned all motion by rail, highway and air out and in of the Nairobi metropolitan space will halt beginning Monday at 7 p.m.

Motion will even be halted out and in of Mombasa, Kenya’s second largest metropolis, in addition to Kilifi and Kwale counties on Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast beginning Wednesday. The restrictions will final for an preliminary 21 days. Motion of meals provides and cargo will proceed as regular, Kenyatta mentioned.

Kenya already has a dusk-to-dawn curfew to comprise the virus that has contaminated 158 individuals within the nation, based on authorities statistics. 4 individuals have died in Kenya from the illness.

Kenyatta mentioned 82% of the confirmed instances got here from Nairobi and 14% had been reported from Kilifi, Kwale and Mombasa counties.

The East African nation of 50 million individuals has 578 intensive care beds.

South Africa leads different African nations with 1,655 confirmed instances of COVID-19 and 11 deaths, and was among the many first to impose journey restrictions as confirmed instances elevated within the nation and throughout Africa.

The nation is in a strict three-week nationwide lockdown that began on March 27 and is ready to final till April 17.

A pair was arrested at their marriage ceremony over the weekend in Richards Bay in Kwazulu-Natal province for breaking the lockdown restrictions which ban gatherings together with church companies. Forty marriage ceremony friends and a pastor had been additionally arrested for attending the ceremony, based on the police.

A video of the couple being arrested and led right into a police car circulated on social media.

Within the Western Cape province, which incorporates the town of Cape City, police arrested a 33-year-old man who was allegedly a part of a bunch that looted a liquor retailer within the metropolis. Liquor gross sales aren’t allowed below South Africa’s lockdown, which additionally prohibits cigarette gross sales.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, at present the chairman of the African Union, has rallied African leaders to unite within the battle in opposition to the unfold of the coronavirus.

Ramaphosa on Monday lauded the not too long ago introduced African Union response fund, which has raised $12.5 million to assist African nations battle the virus.

The fund is to assist reduce crucial shortages of non-public protecting tools for medical workers which have been reported in a number of African nations in Africa as world demand for these will increase and flight restrictions hamper supply of assist and different crucial provides.

The continental physique would additionally channel an extra $4.5 million in direction of the Africa Facilities for Illness Management, which is main the battle in opposition to the virus on the continent.

The African Union fund is just like the nationwide fund Ramaphosa has established in South Africa.

The South Africa fund has already raised a minimum of $150 million, which might be used to get medical and protecting provides, and assist struggling small enterprise and staff in misery because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In uniting behind this world well being emergency, as African nations now we have proven as soon as once more our potential of transcend political and different variations in pursuit of a standard goal,” Ramaphosa mentioned in a press release. “We must always seize this second to deepen collaboration throughout different areas, reminiscent of improvement and commerce.”

Copyright 2020 The Related Press. All rights reserved. This materials is probably not printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed with out permission.



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2 Uncommon White Giraffes Are Killed by Poachers in Kenya


Animals with albinism produce no melanin all through their total our bodies. Animals with leucism might have darker pigment of their comfortable tissue, and their eyes retain a traditional colour. The eyes of animals with albinism are normally purple. Ishaqbini stated the feminine white giraffe had darkish pigment in her comfortable tissue, noting that, “Her eyes had been darkish in colour.”

The Giraffe Conservation Basis estimates that the variety of reticulated giraffes on the planet, which incorporates the species present in Ishaqbini and throughout north and northeastern Kenya, has declined by greater than 50 p.c up to now three a long time, to 15,780 in 2018.

There are about 111,000 giraffes in Africa, in line with the inspiration. In some populations, 50 p.c of calves don’t survive their first yr, the inspiration stated.

The killing of the white giraffes highlighted the threats facing the animals, together with poaching for his or her meat and conceal, together with the lack of their habitat due to infrastructure growth and land clearing for agriculture and firewood.

Whereas conservation efforts in Kenya have improved, the nation has for many years struggled to include the risk to its wildlife inhabitants, a supply of much-needed tourism income. That is very true of its elephant and rhino populations, whose ivory and horns are valued as standing symbols and used as substances in conventional drugs.

Mr. Ahmednoor, the supervisor of Ishaqbini, lamented the probably impression of the white giraffes’ killing, saying that the animals had been “an enormous increase to tourism within the space.”

Additionally, he added, “This can be a long-term loss provided that genetics research and analysis which had been important funding into the realm by researchers has now gone down the drain.”

Past Kenya, a white giraffe was also spotted in 2016 in Tanzania, on the Tarangire Nationwide Park.



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Uncommon white giraffes useless in Kenya, seemingly killed by poachers


Authorities in Kenya are investigating experiences that two uncommon white giraffes have died and that poachers are seemingly accountable for the deaths.

The Hirola Conservation Program announced Tuesday the grownup feminine giraffe and her calf have been discovered useless. In 2017, this system defined the uncommon animals had a condition called leucism, ensuing within the partial lack of the giraffes’ pigmentation.

“This can be a darkish day not solely to the conservation group but in addition to all of the Kenyans who took delight within the existence of this distinctive species,” a launch says.

Locals discovered the carcasses of the animals and the conservation program believes the giraffes have been killed by poachers.

The Kenya Wildlife Service is investigating the deaths and has discovered the stays of two giraffes, the company announced on Twitter Tuesday. The bones gave the impression to be about 4 months previous, the company stated.

“The administration of the conservancy knowledgeable us of the lacking giraffe and calf after failing to see them for a time frame,” the announcement stated. 

Leucism differs from albinism, which is marked by the lack of all pigmentation and impacts the colour of the eyes, the National Park Service says.





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Letter from Africa: The unfold of coronavirus prejudice in Kenya


Passengers wearing face masks queue to be screened after arriving from China at Jomo Kenyatta International AirportPicture copyright
EPA

Picture caption

Passengers arriving in Kenya on flights from China had been being screened on the finish of January

In our sequence of letters from African writers, Kenyan journalist Waihiga Mwaura displays on how the coronavirus has fuelled anti-Chinese language prejudice in his nation.

Regardless of the issues across the unfold of the coronavirus, the best enemy will not be the virus itself, however “fears, rumours and stigma”.

Not my phrases, however these of the Ethiopian who’s main the worldwide effort to reduce the influence of Covid-19.

The World Well being Group chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, was responding on the finish of final month to circumstances of anti-Chinese language prejudice. He repeated the message on Twitter earlier this week whereas sharing a narrative a few Singaporean man who was overwhelmed up within the UK capital, London, over the coronavirus.

The virus of prejudice is spreading. Kenya is not any exception.

‘You might be coronavirus’

A shakily filmed video has been circulating on social media right here exhibiting an Asian man and girl being bullied by a big crowd in a low-income space of the capital, Nairobi.

The video begins with unidentified people within the crowd shouting: “You might be coronavirus, you might be coronavirus.”

The person responds by attempting to movie the gang however shortly realises that his feminine companion might be attacked so rushes to her assist.

He stands as much as essentially the most aggressive member of the gang and begins shouting again: “We do not have corona, we do not have corona.”

The video stops earlier than we see how the incident ended however it was a real depiction of the side-effects of the coronavirus.

Kenyan journalist Waihiga Mwaura

Citizen TV

Earlier than Kenya has even recorded a case, the worry, blended with stigma, is palpable”

On 27 February, a message went viral on Fb, allegedly posted by a Kenyan member of parliament, calling for his constituency residents to keep away from interplay with Chinese language nationals who had simply returned from China after celebrating their new yr.

The publish warned that if the federal government didn’t do sufficient to guard its residents, and forcefully quarantine any of those Chinese language nationals, then the residents had his permission to ward off and stone any Chinese language individuals inside their neighborhood.

China’s embassy responded shortly with a Twitter publish calling for a “rational and scientific method in direction of Chinese language communities” and described the remarks that had been made as racist.

Kenya will not be alone on this prejudice, however what’s fascinating is that every one the preliminary circumstances of the virus in sub-Saharan Africa have been linked to European journey somewhat than China. But there isn’t any equal anti-European feeling.

Earlier than Kenya has even recorded a case, the worry, blended with stigma, is palpable.

Picture copyright
Getty Photos

Picture caption

Some Kenyans have campaigned to cease flights coming in from China

The bias has been fuelled by China and Kenya’s entwined financial relationship.

Kenya has borrowed a big sum of money from China for giant infrastructure initiatives. Whereas the unusual Kenyan will not be feeling the profit, they’re on the lookout for somebody accountable for his or her financial woes.

Uninterested in pointing the finger on the authorities, some right here have re-directed their frustrations in direction of the rising variety of Chinese language nationals who’ve come to hunt financial alternatives.

Coronavirus fears, subsequently, have discovered fertile floor and led to some extraordinary behaviour.

Adrian Blomfield, a veteran freelance journalist right here, stated that every one the drivers at his native taxi rank had agreed to not carry Chinese language individuals as passengers.

One taxi driver instructed me that Chinese language nationals had been altering their consumer names on the taxi hailing apps to keep away from their passenger request being declined.

Picture copyright
Reuters

Picture caption

Kenya has now arrange its first affected person isolation centre

He additionally knowledgeable me that when they’re ferrying passengers from the airport, they roll the home windows down and even put on facemasks, particularly if the passengers had simply landed from China.

He wound up his narrative by demanding that the federal government present free face masks to all taxi drivers who ply the airport route and to supply extra info to the general public.

There was some criticism right here that the authorities have been gradual in educating the general public in regards to the virus and warning them towards prejudice.

What do I have to know in regards to the coronavirus?

The vacuum has been crammed by rumours and misinformation. A sensitisation marketing campaign has now been promised, however it might come too late.

Nonetheless, for Chinese language nationals dwelling in Kenya, like Lin Yimenghan, who runs a charity, life goes on.

He has witnessed just one worrying incident when somebody known as him “coronavirus” at a bus cease in Nairobi.

‘Love and understanding’

However his evaluation of the scenario is outstanding.

“It’s regular for individuals to worry one thing they don’t seem to be conscious of,” he instructed me calmly.

The unfold of the stigma is quicker than the unfold of the virus, he added, and ended with some recommendation: “Individuals ought to have extra understanding and love for one another.”

If solely everybody had such an perspective, then this world can be a extra peaceable place.

Extra Letters from Africa

Observe us on Twitter @BBCAfrica, on Fb at BBC Africa or on Instagram at bbcafrica





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Locusts swarm Kenya, throughout East Africa; local weather change could also be trigger


A farmer looks back as she walks through swarms of desert locusts feeding on her crops, in Katitika village, Kitui county, Kenya, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020. Desert locusts have swarmed into Kenya by the hundreds of millions from Somalia and Ethiopia, countries that haven't seen such numbers in a quarter-century, destroying farmland and threatening an already vulnerable region.

It is the worst locust outbreak to hit Kenya in 70 years.

Tons of of hundreds of thousands of the small bugs are swarming in from neighboring Somalia and Ethiopia with unprecedented dimension and damaging potential, in keeping with the United Nations’ Meals and Agriculture Group.

The Desert Locust, essentially the most devastating of all locust species, is consuming up crops in areas already inclined to meals and water shortages.

“This has turn out to be a scenario of worldwide dimensions that threatens the meals safety of your complete subregion,” FAO Director-Basic QU Dongyu said in a press release.

Some scientists say local weather change is at fault: Heavy rainfall in locust breeding areas has allowed breeding circumstances to stay beneficial, FAO mentioned. East Africa had one in all its wettest years on file final yr, due to warming waters within the Indian Ocean, Nairobi-based local weather scientist Abubakr Salih Babiker told the Associated Press.

See these loopy pictures of the swarms in Kenya.

Desert locusts cover branches in Katitika village.
A local farmer picks up a matured desert locust that turned yellow in the bush near Enziu, Kitui County.
A farmer's son cries out as he is surrounded by desert locusts while trying to chase them away from his crops.
Swarms of desert locusts fly in the sky above Katitika village, Kitui county, Kenya.
Farmers look across as swarms of pink desert locusts create a thick blanket covering trees on their farmland in Katitika village, Kitui county, Kenya.
Desert locusts cover branches.
A local farmer Theophilus Mwendwa runs through a swarm of desert locusts to chase them away in the bush.
A swarm of locusts aggregates on the canopies of shrubs.
A man chases away a swarm of desert locusts in the bush near Enziu, Kitui County, Kenya.
A large swarm of desert locusts are silhouetted in the sky near Lekiji, Samburu East, Kenya.



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U.S. bolsters Kenya base safety after People killed in assault


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. army deployed extra forces to Kenya on Monday to bolster safety at a key airfield after an assault a day earlier by Somalia’s al Shabaab militants that killed three People, the army’s Africa Command stated.

The assault offered Washington with one more disaster simply because the Pentagon grapples with a quickly escalating standoff with Iran following a Friday U.S. drone strike in Baghdad that killed high Iranian army commander Qassem Soleimani.

As hypothesis swirls about how Tehran would possibly reply to the strike, the U.S. army sought to separate the 2 occasions, saying: “The U.S. Africa Command doesn’t assess yesterday’s assault by al Shabaab is linked to Iran.”   

One U.S. official, talking on situation of anonymity, stated about 50 extra troops had been deployed. The U.S. army stated on Sunday that fewer than 150 U.S. personnel had been on the base on the time of the assault.

U.S. Military Main Basic William Gayler, the command’s director of operations, stated the brand new forces got here from the “combat-ready, speedy deployment pressure” often known as the East Africa Response Power (EARF).

“The EARF’s skill to answer occasions spanning an enormous space of duty supplies a confirmed and invaluable on-call reinforcement functionality in occasions of want,” Gayler stated in an announcement.

The assault on the Manda Bay Airfield by al Shabaab killed one U.S. army service member and two contractors and wounded two different People who work for the U.S. Division of Protection.

A Kenyan police report seen by Reuters stated the Islamist militants destroyed two planes, two U.S. helicopters and a number of American army autos throughout their assault.

It was unclear how al Shabaab, which has been preventing for greater than a decade to overthrow the Somali authorities and impose strict Islamic regulation, was in a position to inflict such harm earlier than being repelled by safety forces.

The Pentagon declined to supply additional particulars on the assault.

Reporting by Phil StewartEditing by Chris Reese and Cynthia Osterman



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International Crafts Recycled Handmade Outdated-Usual Wire Bicycle Decoration, Kenya, Set of two (KMWOFB-S2)


Value: $13.20
(as of Dec 29,2019 16:21:16 UTC – Particulars)



This handmade wire bicycle with a raffia loop makes a singular vacation decoration. Crafted from recycled supplies, together with wire and tin, making every bit distinctive.

Set of two Ornaments
Handmade by artisans in Kenya utilizing Recycled Wire. Accent colours might fluctuate based mostly on recycled supplies used.
Every measures roughly 4.5″ in size by 4″ excessive. Measurement might fluctuate based mostly on the handmade nature of every decoration.
International Crafts is proud to be a member of the Truthful Commerce Federation.
Truthful commerce is another enterprise mannequin that values individuals, the planet, and earnings equally. Truthful commerce goals to fight this widespread poverty by offering alternative for economically deprived producers.



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Not less than three killed after residential constructing collapses in Kenya


Individuals watch as rescue groups search the scene the place a constructing collapsed in Nairobi, Kenya December 6, 2019. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Not less than three folks had been killed and 27 injured on Friday when a residential constructing collapsed within the Kenyan capital Nairobi, police mentioned, as rescue employees struggled to free a lady who was screaming from underneath the rubble.

Scores of individuals had been clustered round, held again by a cordon, ready to seek out information of their household and associates as police and a mechanical digger labored by way of the wreckage.

The Kenya Purple Cross mentioned 11 folks had been rescued by late afternoon, about 5 hours after the six-storey constructing collapsed. It was not instantly clear how many individuals had been inside.

“Three folks have died, and 27 others have been rushed to hospital. One was severely injured,” Reuben Ndolo, the Nairobi regional police commander, informed Reuters.

The East African nation has seen comparable tragedies up to now. Forty-nine folks died in 2016 when one other constructing collapsed throughout a heavy night-time downpour in a poor neighbourhood.

The most recent incident occurred within the overcrowded Eastlands a part of the town, close to the scene the place a seven-storey constructing additionally collapsed in 2017.

In 2017, the then governor of Nairobi Evans Kidero mentioned there have been 30,000 to 40,000 buildings in danger within the metropolis as they’d been constructed with out approval.

Reporting by Humphrer Malalo and Katharine Houreld; Writing by Duncan Miriri; Modifying by Alison Williams



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