Travelers from Dubai will now be allowed into the country after Kenya lifted a ban on all inbound and transit passenger flights from the Middle East.
Kahawa Tungu understands the ban was lifted on Monday night after a two-week standoff between Kenya and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) over Covid-19 certificates.
The move comes days after Foreign Affairs Minister Rachael Omamo confirmed talks were underway with UAE on flight resumption.
“We are working together to reach an understanding on how we can return to normalcy,” she said on Friday.
“I have no white smoke to report today but I want to tell you that we are active on the matter and it is our hope that we will reach an understanding that will enable them to open up their flight paths and for us to do the same. It is a matter that is under discussion.”
Kenya suspended all passenger flights from UAE on January 10 in retaliation against a December ban by Dubai.
The ban did not affect cargo flights.
“Inbound and transit passenger flights from UAE are suspended for a period of seven days. We are doing this to reciprocate a ban on Kenyan passenger flights to UAE,” Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) director-general Gilbert Kibe said.
The ban came a few days after UAE extended the ban on Kenyan flights after it was established that Kenyans arriving in the Middle East country tested positive for Covid-19 in spite of being in possession of negative test results.
Kibe then said that the scheme was a collaboration between private medical testing centres and travelers seeking to travel to the Gulf nation.
The ministry of Health has since launched a probe into the matter with a view of bringing to book involved parties.