US Pulls Peace Corps volunteers from Kenya
(NEW YORK)- The United States is suspending its Peace Corps programme in Kenya due to security concerns, the State Department said Thursday.
The decision to pull about 70 volunteers out of Kenya was made June 30 “based on the overall security picture,” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters in Washington.
Officials will continue monitoring security conditions to determine when it is safe to return volunteers to Kenya, the Peace Corps said in a statement to the Associated Press.
A Peace Corps spokesperson had told the Nation on June 23, 2014 that the agency’s volunteers would be staying in Kenya even as the US embassy in Nairobi was reducing its staff and USAid was “permanently” removing some employees from the country.
The spokesperson said then that Peace Corps workers in Kenya had developed “strong language and cross-cultural skills that allow them to move about safely.”
The programme in Kenya has implemented “specific policies and procedures designed to ensure their continued security,” the official added.
It is not clear what led to the sudden reversal of policy.
The move is set to affect Kenya’s image globally since the US and other Western countries have issued travel advisories to their citizens warning them against visiting the country due to insecurity.