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Hoteliers cautiously optimistic

Coast tourism sees no impact on bookings as Kenya hunts militants

Dr. Wolfgang H. Thome, eTN Uganda  Oct 21, 2011

(eTN) - Reports from Mombasa tell a story different from what many global media organizations would want their readers to believe as occupancies remain high and forward bookings have remained steady, while Kenya has, with the consent of the Transitional Federal Government in Mogadishu, crossed into Somalia to hunt down Al Shabab militants.

The mood among the polled hoteliers was cautiously optimistic, attributing the present booking situation to continued marketing and “telling the truth about Kenya” abroad. They also conceded that security measures in and around tourist resorts had been significantly stepped up to ensure the safety and security of visitors while in the resort or while strolling along the beaches. Patrols, it is understood, have been stepped up by plain-clothes security operatives and police, extending from the capital Nairobi to key urban centers to the beaches between Malindi and Mombasa.

The ongoing military operation is now targeting the pirate and militant stronghold of Kismayu after earlier reports that Ras Kamboni, another pirate safe haven so far, has fallen to the onslaught of Kenyan ground troops and air attacks while TFG troops are on an offensive “from the other side” to hunt down Al Shabab militants on the run after being driven out of the capital. Kenya’s move, already sanctioned by the African Union, which has expressed support and reiterated the right to self defense, is also due to be coming before the United Nations Security Council where it is hoped that additional measures are agreed upon to block sea and airborne supplies reaching the militant strongholds.

Coast tourism sees no impact on bookings as Kenya hunts militants
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