US Secretary of State Antony Blinken set to visit Kenya next week

The top diplomat is set to travel to Kenya, Nigeria and Senegal.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is set to visit Kenya next week.

Expect heightened security, traffic and communication disruptions from Monday, next week as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit Kenya to push for cooperation on ending the COVID-19 pandemic and regional security issues.

The State Department on Thursday, November 11 confirmed Blinken will embark on a six day visit of three African countries; Kenya, Nigeria and Senegal from November 15-20.

Kenya a close ally to USA has once again been caught in the middle of a never ending crisis in the Horn of Africa.

Ethiopia is on the verge of full-scale civil war. The confrontation between the authoritarian armed forces and the democratically minded public in Sudan is escalating.

Somalia’s terror group, al-Shabaab is gaining momentum on the ground, once again threatening the government in Mogadishu.

The most pressing and urgent crisis is in Ethiopia, where the government of Ahmed Abiy is bracing for an offensive by northern Tigray rebels and the allied Oromo Liberation Army.

The target is the capital, Addis Ababa, which covers a metropolitan area of 5 million people and is one of Africa’s most important cities.

Addis Ababa is the headquarters of the African Union, a major transport hub for the continent, and the location of many international organisations.

Prime Minister Abiy recently declared a six-month state of emergency and called on citizens to protect the capital.

His armed forces are accused of killing dozens of people in airstrikes in the country’s northern region – the latest in a series of atrocities, at the hands of both the military and rebel groups, that were documented in a recently released United Nations report.

In April this year, Blinken made his first virtual visit to Africa following two separate online meetings with Kenya and Nigeria.

The Secretary’s virtual trip to Kenya celebrated the two countries 57-year bilateral relationship.

Secretary Blinken met with President Uhuru Kenyatta and Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Raychelle Omamo to reaffirm their strategic partnership, discuss future cooperation to promote democracy and expand trade.

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