US Embassy issues security alert for Americans in Kisumu

Americans have been advised to keep a low profile during elections

A man throws a stone on a burnt car as supporters of Kenya's opposition party National Super Alliance (NASA) demonstrate in Kisumu, on November 20, 2017 after Kenya's Supreme Court dismissed two petitions to overturn the country's October 26 presidential election re-run, validating the poll victory of Kenyatta. (Photo by BRIAN ONGORO/AFP via Getty Images)

The U.S Embassy in Kenya has imposed movement restrictions on personnel in Kisumu, just a few days to the August 9 General Elections.

According to the embassy, Kenya has periodically experienced some pre-electoral violence during election cycles. Therefore, the State Department has reminded her U.S. citizens of the continued need for sustained vigilance.

The embassy further advised her citizens to be cautious of any election-related demonstrations or rallies as they may turn violent.

"Demonstrations may occasionally be violent, requiring police intervention. Strikes and other protest activities related to economic conditions occur regularly," read a statement in part.

The embassy went on further to give a list of actions Americans should take during the election period. They include;

  • Monitor local media for updates.
  • Avoid crowds.
  • Avoid demonstrations.
  • Keep a low profile.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Be vigilant when visiting banks or ATMs.
  • Do not display signs of wealth, such as wearing expensive jewelry or watches.
  • Review your personal security plans.
  • Have travel documents up to date and easily accessible.
  • Carry proper identification, including a copy of the bio-page of your U.S. passport with a copy of a current Kenyan visa.

This alert comes only hours after The National Security Council approved the deployment of more security forces in some areas ahead of the General Election.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i on Tuesday, August 2 said the areas had been determined by the council as vulnerable to disturbance.

He said the Ministry had noted anxiety in the regions and the decision was reached after consultations with security apparatus as well as a review of security reports from all the counties.

“Following approval by the National Security Council for additional resources, security services will bolster deployment of personnel and equipment including aerial assets in Molo, Kuresoi, Eldoret and other areas in the country mapped out as vulnerable to disturbance,” Matiang’i said.

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