UK roots for talks in resolving Kenya-Somalia border dispute

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2019 00:00 |
Deputy President William Ruto with the British High Commissioner to Kenya Jane Marriot in Karen, Nairobi, yesterday. Photo/DPPS


Britain would like to see Kenya and Somalia resolve their maritime border dispute amicably, High Commissioner Jane Marriot has said.

Speaking yesterday in Karen, Nairobi, when she met Deputy President William Ruto, the United Kingdom envoy to Kenya said dialogue remains key to solving the dispute.

She said it was remarkable that President Uhuru Kenyatta met with his Somalia counterpart Mohamed Farmaajo on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York last week to explore ways of resolving the problem.

“Dialogue between Kenya and Somalia on how to solve the maritime dispute is important. This is why the step taken by President Kenyatta to meet with his Somalia counterpart was impressive,” she said.

Marriot assured Kenya her country will share information on any possible security threat in the country before taking any action such as issuing travel advisories.

She was responding to Ruto, who had asked the UK to consider sharing information on security threats instead of issuing travel advisories, saying the move was hurting the tourism sector. 

She said terrorism had become a global challenge, forcing Britain to issue travel advisories to its citizens in any part of the world for their safety.

Fight terrorism

 Marriot, however, said her country would work closely with Kenya and share information on any possible security threat before issuing travel advisories.

Ruto welcomed the move, saying it would help promote the tourism sector. He added that the UK was the largest market for Kenya’s tourism.

“We request that UK reviews its travel advisories because Kenya has demonstrated its commitment and capacity to fight terrorism among other security challenges,” he said.

He said Kenya would continue to work together with other nations, including Britain, in exploring ways of solving terrorism issues, which have become a challenge across the globe.

 He said Kenya was seeking Britain’s support to enhance its efforts in fighting terrorism and promoting regional peace. 

 The DP also praised the United Kingdom for its new policy on Kenyan students studying in their country. 

The  students will be allowed to undertake internships to gain relevant skills that enhance their competitiveness in the job market after their studies.

 “This move will go a long way in helping the students gain the necessary skills that can enable them compete effectively and cope with the new challenges of the job market,” he said.

 Ruto also urged Britain to support Kenya in its bid for the non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council, adding that the African Union has already endorsed it.

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