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Britain has welcomed Kenya’s assurances to deal with the skirmishes in Laikipia County ranches and conservancies.
UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who held talks with his Kenyan counterpart Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed on Friday, said action taken so far by Kenya government on restoring law and order in the ranches owned by the British had shown its commitment on the matter.
“There are many factors at work that have caused the crisis, but what I think is apparent to the Government of Kenya and you heard President Kenyatta himself say very powerfully is that there is got to be absolute respect for title to land and for people’s property,” said Mr Johnson after talks with Ms Mohamed.
“Kenya has been completely emphatic about that and I am glad about that and respect the announcement that has been made today and the measures that have been taken and I hope they will give reassurance to those farmers and allow them to go about their lawful business.”
Ms Mohamed sought to reassure Britain saying the government would not rest until normalcy returns in Laikipia.
“The situation has improved from what it was last week. The intention is to ensure the return to normalcy is speeded up. I don’t think it is a situation that is out of control. We are quite confident that sooner rather than later, full normalcy will return,” she said.
Deeper ties after Brexit
During the talks, Mr Johnson pledged deeper UK trade ties with Kenya even after “Brexit”, which is set to see the United Kingdom leave the European Union.
Mr Johnson maintained Kenya’s trade position with the UK will not be hurt by the move amid concerns by Kenya on the future of its trading relationship with its key trading partner.
“Years ago there was heavy tariffs on Kenyan agricultural products of all kind and we would be crazy to go back to a regime of tariffs and quotas,” he said.
The UK is a key market for Kenyan tourists.
Ms Mohamed welcomed Britain’s pledge on security cooperation with Kenya on Somalia, South Sudan and the region as well as assurances on trade.
“Kenya and the UK have enjoyed long-standing historical ties and the government and the people of Kenya have continued to receive support from the UK over the years in various sectors that are critical in our development,” said Ms Amina.
Kenya urged Britain to re-establish its visa processing centre here in Nairobi to ease the application processes for Kenyans travelling to the UK.
– Business Daily