Why Theresa May was accorded a 19-gun salute during her Kenya visit

Visiting leaders are usually accorded a 21-gun salute

Ms May landed at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport aboard a chartered Royal Air Force Voyager from Lagos, Nigeria, at 6.30am.

She then proceeded to the State House, later in the morning, for bilateral talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta.

But before the meeting, Ms May was honoured with a 19-gun salute upon arrival at the President's residence before she inspected a guard of honour.

However, what caught the attention of many Kenyans was the fact that she received a 19-gun salute as opposed to the typical 21-gun salute accorded to foreign heads.


Reason being that gun salutes are accorded to a leader depending on his position or the occasion.

The salutes operate in a descending order (17, 15, 13, 11, 9, 7) with the lowest being 5 which is accorded to deputy ambassadors and their agents.

A 19-gun salute is entitled to heads of foreign missions, foreign heads of government and prime ministers, as was the case with Theresa May.

A 21-gun salute is, on the other hand, accorded to heads of state, famous heroines and foreign sovereigns as well as members of their families.


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