East Africans rescued from Libya


UGANDA (eTN) – Information just received gives an update of the planned Kenya Airways (KQ) evacuation flight, operated on a wide-body B767-300 from Nairobi via Cairo to Tripoli this afternoon.

The Libyan Civil Aviation Authority eventually granted a landing permit on humanitarian grounds, as the aircraft was already sitting at Cairo’s International Airport working out the final logistics.

In addition to the 68 Kenyans, other nationalities to be evacuated include those from Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Southern Sudan, Zimbabwe, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Lesotho, and South Africa, said the statement.

Flight KQ1322 will depart Tripoli at 5:30 pm through Cairo and is expected to land in Nairobi at midnight.

The Boeing 767-300 with 11 crew and an accompanying engineer on board has 191 passengers.

Managing Director Titus Naikuni confirmed that the airline had deployed a charter flight following a request by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Kenya Airways confirmed that the aircraft will be operated with a crew of 11, an extra engineer in case of technical issues arising – this is a standard precaution when operating such a flight – and will take a total of 191 passengers on board. As this operation goes underway, we wish Kenya Airways, and all the crew and passengers, God Speed, safe landings, and a happy reunion with their distraught families in Kenya and the region.

Kenya Airways has been working to put this special flight operation into action over the past few days, but communication and other factors have delayed the flight until this afternoon.

KQ is to be commended for their extraordinary effort to coordinate the rescue mission with the diplomatic representatives of the countries of Nairobi and Tripoli, whose citizens are being flown out of Libya today, fully living up to their other name “the Pride of Africa” – hence, a big “Asante Sana” to KQ!