Thursday, June 07, 2007

Does this have an impact on tourism?

The Mungiki murders and police shootings will leave a lot of people outside Kenya confused – these events are hardly headline news in Europe or North America. Yet.

Unlike an accident involving visitors, or the rare murder of a tourist, there's seen to be little of news value in killings of Africans by Africans. The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office travel advice pages have nothing to say.

President Kibaki's typically clumsy warning to Mungiki sect members – "We will get you" – smacks of desperation. It's resulted in a chaotic bloodbath and, from the POV of the news agenda, is only a couple of quiet-Iraq days away from setting Kenya's tourist industry back once again.

That would be a disaster. These events shouldn't have any impact on tourists visiting the country and visitors shouldn't feel threatened. But for people who are perhaps thinking of going to Kenya for the first time, well, it doesn't look good, does it?

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