Correction to May 14, 2016 Standard Newspaper Article on the “Blacklisting” of Kenya’s Airspace
Saturday, May 14, 2016: The story in today’s Standard newspaper alleging that the United States is seeking to “blacklist” Kenya’s airspace is wrong. The Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) for Kenya issued by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on February 26, 2016 is part of a periodic review of existing NOTAMs. The FAA revised and reissued an existing Kenyan airspace NOTAM that has been continuously in place since 2003. It is not based on any new threat information.
The subsequent listing of this NOTAM on the International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) Conflict Zone Information Repository (CZIR) website was for the purposes of information only, and is consistent with U.S. practice for other NOTAMs. Neither the NOTAM nor the website direct or suggest that airlines avoid Kenyan airspace.
Kenya’s aviation security has improved in recent years. The United States recognizes this and continues to strongly support the effort to initiate direct flights between Kenya and the United States. The issuance of the NOTAM has no effect on continuing U.S. efforts to support the Government of Kenya in meeting international standards for direct flights.
The United States is working in close partnership with Kenya to strengthen the Government of Kenya’s ability to counter terrorism and violent extremism. The United States also strongly supports Kenya’s efforts as part of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Notwithstanding the progress in the fight against al-Shabaab and other extremists that this partnership has achieved, the United States views a continued advisory NOTAM for the present as a prudent measure to provide information to enhance the safety of U.S. air operators, their passengers, and crews.
The FAA monitors threats to U.S. civil aviation world-wide. FAA NOTAMs concern aviation facilities, conditions, or hazards for U.S. air carriers’ and commercial operators’ flight operations personnel. The NOTAM will be regularly reviewed.