Kenya suspends flights from Italy over coronavirus outbreak
JOHANNESBURG - The Kenyan government has announced the suspension of direct flights from northern Italy over the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Daily Nation reported.
The announcement was made on Tuesday by the health cabinet secretary Mutahi Kagwe and chairman of the National Emergency Response Committee (NERCC), after consultations with the Italian Embassy in Kenya and other stakeholders, the Daily Nation said.
Nairobi News reported that Kagwe said that Kenya will continue to monitor the situation in Italy as it evolves and make appropriate changes.
"This part of Italy is experiencing coronavirus incidents which could affect [the] safety to Kenyans," said Kagwe.
On Tuesday, Italy announced that 27 more people have died from the disease as the number of confirmed cases rose to 2,263.
The Ministry of Health in Kenya has heightened surveillance system at all points of entry, health facilities and communities across the country to ensure there is no importation of COVID-19 into the country.
The Daily Nation reported that last Weekend, the Kenya Hotel Keepers and Caterers Association (KHCA) North Coast Chairperson Maureen Awuor, who is also the Ocean Beach Resort general manager, said hoteliers in Malindi risk losing businesses in the coming weeks following the worldwide spread of COVID-19.
The publication said some hotels have begun receiving cancellations and postponements of travel dates from Europe, especially from Italy.
The global death toll from the COVID-19 epidemic surpassed 3,000 on Tuesday after dozens more died at its epicentre in China and cases soared around the world with six fatalities on American soil.
The virus has now infected more than 90,000 people and spread to over 60 countries after first emerging in China late last year.
Kenya has moved to restrict travel, saying those coming into the country from Italy, South Korea and Iran will also be required to self-quarantine for 14 days.African News Agency