US issues travel alert for Kenya

Kenya's Post-Election Violence 2007 - 2008. U.S. travel alert
Kenyan police fire tear gas and water cannon at stone-throwing crowds protesting in Kenya. Courtesy Photo.

Nairobi, Kenya | VOA | The U.S. has warned Americans living in or planning to travel to Kenya about possible outbreaks of violence before the country’s August 8th general elections.

In a travel alert issued Thursday 6th April, 2017, the State Department said, “rallies, demonstrations, and protests may occur with little notice and even those intended to be peaceful can escalate into violence.”

The alert added that “criminal elements or terrorists” could target demonstrators and visitors.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga warned in February of possible mass protests if the results of the upcoming elections are falsified.

There is a recent history of political unrest in Kenya. In 2007, more than 1,200 people were killed after political protests over a disputed poll intensified into ethnic fighting. Elections in 2013 were peaceful.

The 2007 – 2008 post-election violence ended after former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan brokered a peace deal in which Raila Odinga became Prime Minister in a coalition government with President Mwai Kibaki.